Past News Archives

News Release: February 25, 2011
Student Teams to Arrive in Long Beach for 2011 International Plastc Pollution Summit >>

Press Release: February 8, 2011
Algalita's Summer Expedition to the North Pacific Gyre gaining momentum. >>

Letter to Editor: January 8, 2011
President Bill Francis responds to Editor of Science Daily
" Although I agree that there has been a lot of misrepresentation in the media of the size and description of a “Garbage Patch’, focusing on these parameters alone does not address the real issue.">>

News Release: January 3, 2011
Sea Pulse films at Electric Lodge in Venice, January 22.
Discover the beauty and threats to the world ocean. Macdonald Productions and Dance 4 Oceans are presenting Sea Pulse films >>


News Release: December 14, 2010

Youth Summit School Teams Announced

Algalita Marine Research Institute (AMRI) today announced the school teams that have been selected to attend the 2011 Plastics Are Forever International Youth Summit to be held March 11-13, 2011 in Long Beach, California.>>


News Release: November 16, 2010

Youth Summit Deadline Nears

Algalita today issued a reminder that November 30 is the deadline for conservation-minded high school students to submit proposals to participate in the “2011 Plastics Are Forever International Youth Summit and Training Program.”>>


Sunday Times Magazine - South Africa, October 11, 2010

"Blue Flag, Red Flag"

On the day Camps Bay was awarded a Blue Flag, the Eco Mole found a mess.>>


Cabrillo Marine Aquarium Panel, October 1, 2010

"Tracking Our Plastic Footprint"

Speakers from Algalita and Southern California Coastal Water Research Project (SCCWRP) participate in the panel.>>


1st Annual Seabird Conference, September 8, 2010

Holly Gray and Gwen Lattin of Algalita speak at international conference held in Victoria, Canada, an event focused on helping Seabirds survive.>>


Algalita Participates in GESAMP Conference

June 30, 2010

Algalita Marine Research Foundation (AMRI) board president Bill Francis attended GESAMP [Joint Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Environmental Protection] International Workshop held June 28-30, 2010 in Paris, France. >>


Justmeans, Tiffany F, May 12, 2010
"Environmental Awareness Sheds Light on Man-Made Horrors"

Can your astute environmental awareness tell you the answer to this riddle? What is twice the size of Texas, filled with an abundance of colored objects, and growing exponentially? >>


SmartPlanet, Christina Hernandez, April 29, 2010

"Following plastic debris from the ocean onto our plates"

When we dip our toes into the ocean, it’s sometimes hard to tell what else is in the water. Researchers know we’re sharing the waves with plastic debris and other trash. >>


Popular Mechanics, Chris Ladd

"Plastic from Algae: The First Step Toward a Fish-Friendly Gyre?"

By year's end, an Indiana company says it will be making plastic from algae, substituting up to half of the material normally derived from fossil fuels with biomass from the aquatic plants, and selling the product to manufacturers. >>


KQED Quest, April 20, 2010

"Plastic in the Pacific"

Imagine every person on earth had 100 pounds of plastic. That’s how much new plastic will be manufactured in 2010. Sadly, much of that will end up in the ocean within a massive area dubbed the Pacific Garbage Patch. Can anything be done to clean it up? >>

Producer's Notes: The Plastic Breakdown >>


See Jane Run - Passport to Life

"See Jane Run for Earth Day" (check Webisode Archive)

See Jane Run takes a moment to honor Earth Day and find out about our plastic footprint from Captain Charles Moore of The Algalita Marine Research Institute which is dedicated to the protection of the marine environment through research, education, and restoration.  Let Earth Day be every day! >>, Andy Keller, April 16, 2010

"Paper or Plastic? Help End the Debate"

In 1982 Safeway and Kroger, the largest grocery chains in the U.S., introduced consumers to the increasingly perplexing question: “Paper or plastic?” >>


Associated Press, Mike Melia, April 15, 2010

"A 2nd garbage patch: Plastic soup seen in Atlantic"

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – Researchers are warning of a new blight at sea: a swirl of confetti-like plastic debris stretching over a remote expanse of the Atlantic Ocean. >>


The Late Show with David Letterman, March 15, 2010

Capt. Charles Moore guest appearance

The founder of the Algalita Marine Research Institute talks ocean pollution and gives Dave some tweet inspiration. >>

short video clip >>


Conservation Magazine, Susan Casey, January-March 2010 (Vol. 11 No. 1)

"Garbage In, Garbage Out"

When a single swath of ocean contains more plastic than plankton, the simple act of taking out the trash becomes a grueling scientific challenge. >>


WorldAffairs Take Action event, Brian Gruber (, March 11-12, 2010

Capt. Charles Moore interview

Capt. Moore discusses the founding of Algalita, the size of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, and the move from the age of extraction to the age of reuse. >>


Aloha Analytics blog, Brad Parsons, February 19, 2010

"Plastic Bags and Plastic Footprint vs. Carbon Footprint"

The following is a link to a great one hour interview on KKCR Radio of the "Great Pacific Garbage Patch" expert Captain Charles Moore about plastics in the oceans. In the interview Capt. Moore mentions the point that our "plastic footprint" may actually be a bigger problem for the environment than our supposed "carbon footprint." >>


Good Morning America, February 3, 2010

"Trash Found in Fish"

The ocean is filled with refuse that may be getting into our food. >>


The Daily Item, Debra Glidden, January 8, 2010

"Nahant Marine Science Center to present lecture on debris circle"

Capt. Charles Moore, who found what he calls a toxic plastic soup by accident more than a decade ago, is scheduled to speak Tuesday evening at 7 p.m. at the Marine Science Center. >>


Marine Environmental Research Institute, January 8, 2010

Capt. Charles Moore's lecture: A Sea of Plastic

Widely recognized for his 1997 discovery of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a floating mass of plastic debris twice the size of Texas, Moore has pioneered the research and remediation of the oceans’ plastic burden. Plastic debris has infiltrated all levels of the ocean food web, killing 100,000 marine mammals and one million seabirds annually, and threatening human health. In the first lecture of MERI’s 20th Anniversary Ocean Environment Lecture Series, Moore will explore the challenges of our “throw away culture” and our role in a solution. >>


Maine Public Broadcasting, Anne Mostue, January 7, 2010

"Explorer Tracks Effects of 'Great Garbage Patch'"

On a sailing voyage across the Pacific in 1997, explorer, sailor and ocean advocate Captain Charles Moore accidentally stumbled upon an enormous swirling bundle of plastic garbage twice the size of Texas floating at sea. Since the discovery, Moore has been tracking the scope and implications of plastic contamination on the marine food chain, logging more than 100,000 miles aboard his research vessel. Moore is in Maine to give a lecture at the Maine Environmental Research Institute in Blue Hill, and this morning sat down with Anne Mostue at our Bangor studio for an interview. >>


University of North Carolina Wilmington News, January 6, 2010

"Explorer and Researcher Charlie Moore to Speak at UNC Wilmington Jan. 14 about 'Great Pacific Garbage Patch'"

The amount of plastic pollution in the Pacific and the consequences it may have for the oceans, the planet and human health has been a subject of research and controversy in recent years. >>


The Colbert Report, January 6, 2010

Capt. Charles Moore guest appearance

Captain Moore talks about the garbage patch that's turning the Pacific Ocean into a plastic wasteland. >>


Los Angeles Times, Louis Sahagun, January 4, 2010

"Santa Monica Couple to Study Effects of Plastic Particles in Sargasso Sea"

On Thursday, Santa Monica researchers Marcus Eriksen and Anna Cummins plan to set sail in the 72-foot sloop Sea Dragon on a voyage across the Sargasso Sea region of the North Atlantic to investigate the prevalence of micro-plastic marine debris. >>


KQED Quest, Amy Standen, December 8, 2009

"Scenes from the Pacific Garbage Patch"

Reporter Lindsey Hoshaw recently returned from a trip to the Pacific Garbage Patch.  She was the only journalist on a scientific expedition led by Charles Moore, who discovered the patch 12 years ago. QUEST reporter Amy Standen talked to Lindsey about her trip to the patch and what she found there. >>


National Geographic Adventure Magazine, Ryan Bradley, December 3, 2009
"Go Green: Eco-Voyagers Take on the Great Pacific Garbage Patch"

And the award for green cause of the year goes to . . . the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. After decades of anonymity, the floating trash pile located midway between California and Hawaii had a breakout 2009—luring news crews, a trio aboard a raft made of junk, a zero-impact rower, and some hipsters from Vice magazine. Oh, and it was featured on Oprah. But most of the coverage (even you, Oprah) failed to ask one rather important question: Now that we know it’s out there, what do we do about it? >>


The New York Times, Lindsey Hoshaw, November 9, 2009

"Afloat in the Ocean, Expanding Islands of Trash"
Aboard the Alguita, 1,000 miles northeast of Hawaii — In this remote patch of the Pacific Ocean, hundreds of miles from any national boundary, the detritus of human life is collecting in a swirling current so large that it defies precise measurement. >>


Long Beach Press Telegram, Joe Segura, October 6, 2009

"Pollution study vessel returns to Long Beach"

LONG BEACH - The ocean-research vessel Algalita and crew returned Tuesday to Alamitos Bay Landing, carrying more dismal evidence about ocean pollution. The journey - to an area known as "the great Pacific Garbage Patch" - was the 10th for Capt. Charles Moore. And his last - for now, at least. >>


DC Bureau, Adam Sarvana, September 25, 2009

"Fish and Paint Chips Part II: The Politics of Ocean Trash"

When it comes to reducing garbage in the world’s oceans, the political angle is just as important as the scientific, to judge by industry’s behavior. On Aug. 18, Seattle voters passed by a 53-47 margin a referendum to overturn a 20-cent fee approved last year by the city council for using plastic bags at supermarkets, pharmacies and convenience stores. >>


DC Bureau, Adam Sarvana, September 23, 2009

"Fish and Paint Chips Part I: The Science of Trash"

Recent research has the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) concerned that the huge quantities of metal, plastic, paint chips and other man-made debris floating at sea, hundreds and even thousands of miles from land, may be working their way into the American diet. >>


California Environmental Protection Agency, September 22, 2009

"State Joins Forces with Non-Profit Groups to Find Solutions to Ocean Waste and Toxicity of Plastics"

Frustrated by the growing mounds of trash found in our oceans, and the threat to jobs in fishing industries and tourism, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) and other environmental officials say it’s time for radical solutions. >>


Algalita's Commentary by Board Member John Fentis, September 22, 2009

"The Power of Partnerships and Green Chemistry to Solve Ocean Pollution"

I have been asked to provide some commentary today on what we as individuals can do to address this environmental concern. If the answer was simply to discourage individuals, either by logic or draconian enforcement measures, from depositing one time disposable plastic products into our planet’s oceans, I could sit down and my commentary would be at an end. The solution is not that simple. >>

Ocean Trash & Green Chemistry Video >>


The Huffington Post, Laurie David, July 31, 2009

"Day 51 of Algalita's Oceanographic Research Vessel Expedition: A Letter From Captain Charles Moore"

The field work has been completed and in his final email from this journey, Captain Moore shares his thoughts with us. . >>


The Huffington Post, Laurie David, July 16, 2009

"Day 34 of Algalita's Oceanographic Research Vessel Expedition: A Letter From Captain Charles Moore"

Day 34 has brought the Alguita to the International Dateline! In the email below, the crew reports on their very interesting day full of sightings, plastic debris findings and unique ways to pass the time at sea. >>


Discovery Canada

"JUNK: Welcome Aboard"

Welcome Aboard JUNK - a kontiki-style raft that sailed between Long Beach, California and Honolulu, Hawaii during the summer of 2008. Onboard and on-mission were Dr. Marcus Erikson and Joel Paschal of the Algalita Marine Research Foundation. The reason? To raise awareness about plastic in our oceans. >>


Sierra Magazine, David Ferris, May/June 2009 Issue

"Message in a Bottle"
Seabirds are starving with bellies full of trash. Fur seals in New Zealand poop shards of yellow and blue. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is twice the size of Texas. Now the bad news: Plastic never goes away, and scientists are finding that it absorbs toxins with spongelike efficiency. The fix? Cut it off at the source. >>


Patagonia Catalogue Surf 2009, Nicole Chatterson

"A Plague of Plastic"

What we do on land affects even the most remote parts of our planet including our oceans. In the North Pacific Gyre, a rotating body of ocean currents roughly 1,000 nautical miles northeast of the Hawaiian Islands, the magnitude of human impact is powerfully clear. Trash, notably plastic waste, is accumulating here and turning our oceans into a synthetic soup. Everything from tiny plastic fragments to fully intact car tires litter the water column. >>


The Daily Telegraph, April 24, 2009

"Drowning in plastic: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is twice the size of France"

There are now 46,000 pieces of plastic per square kilometre of the world's oceans, killing a million seabirds and 100,000 marine mammals each year. Worse still, there seems to be nothing we can do to clean it up. So how do we turn the tide? >>


Green Patriot Radio, March 29, 2009

"Trashing our Planet"

Hello green patriots, eco warriors, environmental wannabes, Republicans, Democrats, global warming zealots and skeptics--you're all welcome here. Here's where we take out lives to the deep green because we know that environmental policies determine a nation's fate. What we talk about here is absolutely essential to our nation. We go from the personal to the global. >>


Wall Street Journal, Carl Bialik, March 25, 2009

"How Big Is That Widening Gyre of Floating Plastic?"

A soup of plastic debris floats off the coast of California, a testament to humanity's reliance on plastic and the failure to dispose of it properly.

Just how big is this oceanic zone? Some say it is about the size of Quebec, or 600,000 square miles -- also described as twice the size of Texas. Others say this expanse of junk swept together by currents is the size of the U.S. -- 3.8 million square miles. Or, it could be twice that size. >>


The Japan Times, Winifred Bird, March 22, 2009

"Oceans awash in toxic seas of plastic"

Go down to the beach today and you'll find plenty of garbage among the sand — but that's nothing compared with the continent-sized whirlpools of lethal waste out there beyond the horizon. >>


Earth Island Journal, Spring 2009

"Captain Charles Moore...Talks Trash"

In talking to Captain Moore, it becomes clear that the pollution of our oceans, epitomized by the patch’s toxic stew of plastic particles, is actually a land-based problem. To Moore, what drives the market and what runs off the street into our oceans are part of the same problem. >>


TED Conference, February 2009

Capt. Charles Moore on the seas of plastic

Capt. Charles Moore of the Algalita Marine Research Institute first discovered the Great Pacific Garbage Patch -- an endless floating waste of plastic trash. Now he's drawing attention to the growing, choking problem of plastic debris in our seas. >>


Good Morning America, February 4, 2009

"Are you Eating Garbage?"

Sam Champion follows the trash trail right back into your home. >>



Eriksen Captures Prestigious 2008 SETAC / Menzie Environmental Education Award, November 16, 2008

The Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry is pleased to announce Marcus Eriksen and the Algalita Marine Research Institute as the recipients of the 2008 SETAC/Menzie Environmental Education Award. This award recognizes an individual, group, organization or corporation that has made a major contribution in improving environmental science education. >>


WEND Magazine, Anna Cummins, Volume 3 Issue 4 Winter 2008-2009

"Sailing the Synthetic Seas"

Though I was fairly certain I would look back on this moment and wonder what I had been thinking, it was an opportunity I couldn’t refuse: a month at sea, crossing the North Pacific Ocean in winter, a novice among an all-male crew of seasoned sailors. The mission, to investigate the rapid increase in plastic trash in our oceans, was one I’d been fascinated with for years. >>


Juneau Empire, Teri Tibbett, September 11, 2008

"Plastic Soup"

Stephen Blanchett, of the Yup'ik-Inuit funk band Pamyua, was glad to be invited to perform in Juneau for an event celebrating the ocean. The band's ancestors and relatives have lived off the sea. The connection is a deep part of their culture. >>


Capt. Charles Moore is honored in PLENTY magazine's Plenty 20

Since 1997, Moore’s nonprofit, the Algalita Marine Research Institute, has documented the “great Pacific garbage patch.” Also known as the Pacific Gyre, the 3.5 million tons of plastic floating in the ocean threaten organisms of all sizes, from whales to plankton. >>


The Hindu, August 29, 2008

"Raft of junk crosses Pacific in three months"

Tanned, dirty and hungry, two men who spent three months crossing the Pacific on a raft made of plastic bottles to raise awareness of ocean debris finally stepped onto dry land. >>


ABC News, Darcy Bonfils and Imaeyen Ibanga, August 6, 2008

"Hidden, a 3.5 Million Ton Trash Heap Lies in the Ocean"

The world's largest trash dump doesn't sit on some barren field outside an urban center. It resides thousands of miles from any land — in the Pacific Ocean. >>


The New York Times, Donovan Hohn, June 22, 2008

"Sea of Trash"

Off Gore Point, where tide rips collide, the rolling swells rear up and steepen into whitecaps. Quiet with concentration, Chris Pallister decelerates from 15 knots to 8, strains to peer through a windshield blurry with spray, tightens his grip on the wheel and, like a skier negotiating moguls, coaxes his home-built boat, the Opus - aptly named for a comic-strip penguin - through the chaos of waves. Our progress becomes a series of concussions punctuated by troughs of anxious calm. In this it resembles the rest of Pallister’s life. >>


Los Angeles Times, Margaux Wexberg Sanchez, June 30, 2008

"On a Sea of Trash"

On the first of June, two men and a rabbit set sail from the port of Long Beach, bound for Hawaii, on a raft made of junk. Their cabin is the cockpit of a Cessna 310, white with a blue racing stripe, salvaged from the desert. It floats on a system of handmade pontoons -- 15,000 plastic bottles held together with recycled nets -- propelled by currents and wind. If it sounds dangerous and makeshift, that's the point. The pilots of Junk, as the vessel is called, want to get your attention. >>


El País, May 2, 2008

"El mayor vertedero del mundo está en el océano Pacífico"

Una gran "sopa de plástico" que flota en el océano Pacífico con un tamaño dos veces el territorio de Estados Unidos es, según los científicos, el mayor vertedero del mundo. La mancha cubre cerca de 500 millas de la costa de California, rodea Hawai y se extiende hasta casi Japón, según publica The Independent. >>


Algalita featured on

(no longer available)


FLYP, April 11, 2008

"Plastic Soup"

Captain Moore and crew journeyed to the ocean's biggest trash dump to get a look at thie environmental problem. >>


Message-in-a-Bottle project featured in Long Beach Press Telegram, March 27, 2008

(article available in archives only)


ABC News Nightline, Brian Rooney, March 26, 2008

"Landfill in the Sea"

If by chance you are missing a basketball, you may be glad to know that it has been found in the Pacific Ocean. It was there along with giant tangles of rope, sunken snack-food bags, a plastic six-pack ring and thousands upon thousands of plastic bags, billowing under the ocean surface like jellyfish.

And that's not all. >>


The Independent, Kathy Marks and Daniel Howden, February 5, 2008

"The world's rubbish dump: a tip that stretches from Hawaii to Japan"

A "plastic soup" of waste floating in the Pacific Ocean is growing at an alarming rate and now covers an area twice the size of the continental United States, scientists have said. >>


The Courier-Mail, Xavier La Canna, February 3, 2008

"Floating rubbish dump in Pacific Ocean 'bigger than US'"

It has been described as the world's largest rubbish dump, or the Pacific plastic soup, and it is starting to alarm scientists. It is a vast area of floating plastic debris. >>


Denver Post, Paul Miller, January 13, 2008

"We're drowning in an ocean of garbage"

I used to be embarrassed about spending time rinsing out plastic sandwich bags and reusing them. It's the kind of thing I'd do furtively at home, hanging the plastic to dry in the basement where nobody would see. But lately I discovered a good rationale for my obsession: the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. >>


2007 Gyre Voyage


Honolulu Star Bulletin, Alexandre Da Silva, November 11, 2007

"Flotilla of trash trickles into isles"

A visiting California researcher says Hawaii is "being invaded" by marine debris, some of it detaching from a large concentration of junk in an area known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. >>


San Francisco Chronicle, Justin Berton, October 30, 2007

"Feds want to survey, possibly clean up vast garbage pit in Pacific"

The so-called Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a stewy body of plastic and marine debris that floats an estimated 1,000 miles west of San Francisco, is a shape-shifting mass far too large, delicate and remote to ever be cleaned up, according to a researcher who recently returned from the area. But that might not stop the federal government from trying. >>


San Francisco Chronicle, Justin Berton, October 19, 2007

"Continent-size toxic stew of plastic trash fouling swath of Pacific Ocean"
At the start of the Academy Award-winning movie "American Beauty," a character videotapes a plastic grocery bag as it drifts into the air, an event he casts as a symbol of life's unpredictable currents, and declares the romantic moment as a "most beautiful thing." To the eyes of an oceanographer, the image is pure catastrophe. >>



Los Angeles Times, Kenneth R. Weiss, August 2, 2006

"Plague of Plastic Chokes the Seas"

On Midway Atoll, 40% of albatross chicks die, their bellies full of trash. Swirling masses of drifting debris pollute remote beaches and snare wildlife. >>