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[GreenYes] Re: two men have just finished a 2,600 mile journey from California to Hawaii.


Your motto sounds about right for most plastics.  

If conditions are right, some plastics melt.  I have in my files a fascinating article from the New York Times about how plastic things stored in museums start liquifying after decades in exhibits.  One example was astronaut's suits, which became sticky and lost their integrity after about forty years.  Another example was melmac dishes.  Now there's a plastic I would have thought might last maybe a hundred years, but not so, according to the article.  Melmac melted, too.

If a museum can't keep plastics from deteriorating (no sunlight, constant temperature, moisture control), then the chance for polymers to last forever in the earth's environment is about as infinitely small as forever is infinitely long.

Dan Knapp
Urban Ore, Inc., a corporation working to end the Age of Waste since 1980

On Aug 28, 2008, at 2:40 PM, James Wood wrote:

My motto is: Plastic Breaks, usually too soon and lasts too long after it does.
----- Original Message -----
From: Dan Knapp
Sent: Thursday, August 28, 2008 3:10 PM
Subject: [GreenYes] Re: two men have just finished a 2,600 mile journey from California to Hawaii.

To all:

Congratulations to these eco-adventurers.  Any pictures?

A footnote:  my 28 years in the reuse business tells me plastics are not forever at all.  Everything put together falls apart sometime.  Plastics age and decompose much faster than many competing materials.  That's not to say they're benign.  

But forever is a long, long time.

Dan Knapp
Urban Ore, Inc., a reuse and recycling business in Berkeley, California since 1980    

On Aug 28, 2008, at 11:11 AM, RicAnthony@no.address wrote:

'Junk' Raft Completes Journey  
Written by Brooks Baehr - bbaehr@no.address   
August 27, 2008 06:21 PM

Plastics are polluting our oceans. Some scientists say 100 million tons of plastic bags, bottles, food containers, and other items have created an environmental nightmare. Fish and birds are eating the plastic, and in the process they are introducing chemicals into the food chain.

To raise awareness about the problem two men have just finished a 2,600 mile journey from California to Hawaii. They made the trip on a raft built from recycled junk, thus the raft's name; The Junk.

"Never so good to see people. To see land. Three months at sea. Twice as long as expected," Marcus Eriksen said as the raft was towed into the Ala Wai Boat Harbor.

Eriksen and Joel Paschal left Long Beach, California on June 1. They spent 88 days on junk. Literally. Their raft is made from 15,000 plastic bottles bundled together for floatation, discarded sail boat masts for strength, and an old cessna fuselage for a cabin.

"The only stuff that's modern, nice, is the safety equipment. We had to take a full complement of safety gear because it's an unproven boat," Paschal told KGMB9.

The trip got off to a slow start.

"In the first four weeks we achieved 218 miles West. That's it. We had another 2,400 miles to go. First month, went just South. South. South. And we're headed towards hurricane Alley. We had four hurricanes pass within 100 miles South of us," Eriksen said.

The hurricanes did not get them ... but hunger almost did. They caught as many fish as they could, but still ran low on food.

"So we went onto half rations after we realized we were going to take too long to get there," Paschal explained.

Now that their mission is complete, they are focusing on their message.

"The mass of plastic in the middle of the Pacific, in the middle of no where, it's increasing very quickly. When we began ten years ago and we found like .002 grams (of plastic) for each square meter. It doubled in five years. It doubled again three years later," Eriksen said.

"We are creating all of this plastic junk that we use just one time and it lasts forever in the environment," Paschal added.

"The solution is a cultural fix. Get people aware of the plastic trash issue and then do something about it," Eriksen concluded.

He asks everyone to help by using less plastic and recycling what is used. He said government can help by outlawing plastic bags.

San Diego, California

It's only a deal if it's where you want to go. Find your travel deal here.

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