Read the text then choose true or false for the statements following it.
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a huge area of sea twice the size of Texas that is polluted with plastic. It is often misleadingly portrayed in photographs as a huge floating mass of large plastic pieces almost solid enough to walk on. This is however not what it really looks like - the garbage patch is more like a garbage soup. There is a significant amount of obvious floating surface debris, but much of the plastic is in the form of tiny particles of less than 5mm in diameter (termed microplastics) floating on and just below the surface of the ocean.
Over the last 30 to 40 years, millions of tonnes of plastic have entered the oceans. Some has been illegally tipped at sea, but most comes from the land, from poorly run landfill sites and industrial waste, or from litter that has not been properly disposed of. This litter gets swept into drains and ends up in rivers – so plastic cups or bags carelessly dropped could end up in the sea. Through the actions of winds and currents the floating plastic debris accumulates. Over time the plastic breaks down through degradation due to sunlight and the action of waves. Many of the resultant plastic particles end up being accidentally ingested by marine animals, which can die of starvation because of the plastic filling their stomachs. The particles also act like sponges for harmful chemicals in the sea that have come from industry and agriculture over the last decades. The particles absorb these materials and effectively become toxic. The entry of plastic pieces and the absorbed toxic chemicals into our food chain should certainly be of concern, although it is not yet known whether this has a long-term effect on human health.
The oceanic garbage patches rotate and move, and areas of highest density of plastic within the patches are also not static, making a clean-up very challenging. To attempt to do this by skimming off the surface-water would not only be very costly in terms of both money and energy, but also fish and small marine life would be accidentally removed. Because the middle of the oceans are not owned or controlled by any one country, this global issue would require the participation and cooperation of many countries.
It is allowed to dump rubbish into the sea.
There are in fact no large plastic pieces in the Garbage Patch, just microplastics.
If marine animals eat plastic particles, it affects their digestive system.
Countries must challenge each other to clean up the oceans.