Plastic Ocean Project
In a rare opportunity to have access to the open-ocean for months at a time, this adventure, a feat in itself, will also provide scientific data on micro plastics within the North Atlantic Ocean. Mark has partnered with The Ocean Plastics Society to play a major role in collecting samples in one of the most profound characteristics of the North Atlantic – the Gulf Stream.
In simple terms, this will involve dragging a neuston net for 45 minutes then carefully collecting and storing the samples each day. The opportunity is ‘unique’ in that it will allow for the capture of particles over a period of several months at a speed that is perfect for marine plastic sampling in a craft that makes deployment advantageous.
Through close liaison with Bonnie Monteleone, Director of Science, Research and Academic Partnerships for the Plastic Ocean Project, Inc. and the various researchers at the North Carolina University, a system is being designed specifically for Marks craft to capture and record sub surface micro plastics within the water column which will then be analyzed once Mark is back on dry land. To date, collecting a large sample set just below the surface has not been accomplished. The results could strengthen our understanding of what types of plastics exist below the surface as well as how weather plays a role in the “yoyo” effect on submerged plastics.
Bonnie has considerable experience in this field, being a marine researcher who has been involved in the sampling of micro plastic in four of the five major ocean gyres including the Sargasso Sea.
Through comparison with ocean currents, weather and other variables, it is hoped that this will assist in giving a valuable insight in to micro plastics within the North Atlantic gyre, a huge circulatory system of water stretching from near the equator, almost to Iceland and from the East coast of the U.S.A to the West coasts of Europe and Africa.
It is hoped that through his efforts, Mark will not only provide scientific data but also further raise the profile of plastics within our oceans, types of plastics that are available for marine species that feed in the water column, and more insight into the effect plastic has on the planet as a whole.
All money raised will be put towards a Microscopic FTIR – iN10MX, an Infra-red microscope, enabling researchers to accurately analyze for plastic particles down to 10 micron which in turn will help highlight the distribution of plastics within the oceanic ecosystem.
Global’s Make Some Noise is a national charity that funds and empowers projects helping disadvantaged children, young people and their families.
Life is tough for a child or young person living with illness, disability or lack of opportunity. It can be very isolating for them and their family. Make Some Noise funds vital equipment and life-changing services to help children and young people through challenging times, including therapy, counselling, nursing and support groups.
Global’s Make Some Noise is supported by the media and entertainment group, Global, home to some of the UK’s biggest radio brands including Heart, Capital, Classic FM, Smooth, LBC, Radio X, Capital XTRA and Gold. They come together to give a voice to small charities that struggle to get heard and also provide training to boost skills and build sustainability.
In short, Global’s Make Some Noise raises money, raises awareness and raises the bar.