There are 5 major gyres, one in each ocean. Each gyre is created by the currents in the ocean. They are a buildup of trash that has concentrated itself in one location due to the movement of ocean currents.
The plastic in each gyre breaks down due to UV Light, mechanical action, and photodegration into microplastics. These microplastics are about the size of a grain of rice.
Microplastics are being consumed at many levels of the food chain in oceans and by coastal birds, fish and marine mammals. Evidence of microplastics have been found in the stomachs of birds and fish all over the world.
Microplastics adsorb PCB’s, DDT’s BPA’s, POP’s and flame retardants which have been shown to be carcinogenic and endocrine disruptors. When fish and birds consume these micro plastics, the toxins bioaccumulate up the food chain into humans.
Floating on the surface of the North Pacific Gyre, there are 28 pounds of microplastics for every pound of zooplankton.
golf ball pollution
Golf balls in the ocean degrade significantly faster than on land
Balls begin by losing the outer plastic cover which then breaks into smaller pieces that eventually become microplastics
The remaining ball either contains a solid core or a rubber band core
A solid core contains zinc acrylate. The GHS has labeled Zinc Acrylate, “very toxic to aquatic organisms, may cause long-term adverse effects in aquatic environments.”
A rubber band core unravels into what looks like kelp grass and easily tangles into kelp and sea life.
I have over 35,000 golf balls sorted into varying degrees of degradation, and would love to make a piece of art out of them. If you are interested or know of anyone who is interested in creating a educational mural with these golf balls, please contact us!! Also if you know of a location or have suggestions as to where we should contact, please let us know! You can email us under the contact page