The Ocean Cleanup is a highly touted nonprofit with the ambitious goal of cleaning up 90 percent of the ocean’s plastic. In reality, the initiative’s impact on the world’s floating debris would be minimal, researchers reported recently in Science of the Total Environment. “I think the general public was believing that we had a solution to the plastic problem,” said Sönke Hohn, a marine biologist at the Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research in Bremen, Germany, at the time of the study and lead author. “Our research showed that we are far away from having solved this problem if we don’t keep changing our behavior.” An incredible amount of plastic invades the world’s seas each year. The amount is expected to triple throughout the next century. Photo credit: the Ocean Cleanup Each year, 5 million to 13 million metric tons (11 billion to 28 billion pounds) of plastic wash into the ocean. The amount is expected to triple over the next century. Not only does this pose a danger to marine life, which can get entangled in plastic or ingest it, but it’s also a risk to human health through eating contaminated seafood. The Ocean Cleanup is one of the most prominent initiatives for confronting this rapidly growing ocean waste. Its cleanup device, according to marine biogeochemist Matthias Egger from the nonprofit, works like a “giant Pac-Man,” sweeping up the debris using a screen attached to a floating barrier. The organization claims that it can use this device to clear…This article was originally published on Mongabay Läs mer