This video describes the reservoirs of plastic in the ocean: garbage patches, coastlines, seafloor microplastics, and seafloor macroplastics.
Viewers are left with actions they can take to address the global oceanic plastic problem such as beach clean-ups, recycling and reducing the use of plastic.
This video uncovers an enormous environmental challenge that is not always visibly apparent to individuals, especially those who live far from coastlines.
The video provides nice graphs and images to help students understand the marine plastic debris problem.
Scientific methods for measuring ocean plastic are described, and solutions to mitigate plastic pollution are discussed.
Students should be familiar with the concepts of macro- and micro- to understand the plastic pollution issue.
Students should be reminded that plastic production and use is a recent phenomenon of the past century.
Even if students do not live near a coastline, they could consider how their plastic may end up in the ocean. Having students complete a plastic use audit can be helpful for them to understand their individual impact.
Consider having students make predictions before watching the video about where and in what form oceanic plastic is found.
This resource is a 9-minute video that examines the fate of plastic pollution in our oceans. The resource examines the types of pollution found in the Pacific Ocean Garbage Patch and looks at differences between microplastic and macroplastic pollution. The resource concludes with some actions we all can take to reduce plastic pollution. This resource is recommended for teaching.
Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
MS-ESS3-3 Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.
MS-ESS3-4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems.
ETS1: Engineering Design
HS-ETS1-4 Use a computer simulation to model the impact of proposed solutions to a complex real-world problem with numerous criteria and constraints on interactions within and between systems relevant to the problem.