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Island of garbage: The all-female voyage to battle Earth's plastic crisis

Ubiquitous plastic waste may pose serious risks to our health. A crew of scientists and activists is conducting a hands-on investigation.


Grist published this story on Feb. 5; if you missed it then, it's worth reading now. The scale of the problem these women are tackling is enormous. A key quote:

"When we sailed into the southern edge of the Gyre, we started to see a piece of plastic over the side of the boat every 10 seconds – a cigarette lighter, a bottle," she said. "Then when you wake up the next morning, and it's still going, and wake up seven days later, and it's still going, and you're 800 miles from the nearest human being – it's that relentlessness that's just so overwhelming."

Keeping track of all this news can also be overwhelming. We employ a team of researchers to filter the deluge and deliver the most relevant, insightful pieces to your inbox – free every week, on Mondays. Subscribe today.

Your engagement is key. After all, as Grist reporter Eve Andrews notes, "the problem will not just drift away."

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