Plastiki Sails the World
The Plastiki is a 60-foot catamaran made from 12,500 plastic bottles. British environmentalist David de Rothschild arrived in Sydney harbor on June 26, 2010, after a 12,860-kilometer (8,000-mile) journey from San Francisco. The boat's name is a play on Kon-Tiki, the ship that Norwegian writer Thor Heyerdahl built and sailed from Peru to the Polynesian islands in 1947. Plastiki's journey took the ship through the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a gyre of floating plastic waste twice the size of Texas, in the northern Pacific Ocean. Millions of indestructible polystyrene bottle caps circulate slowly, indefinitely, their sun-bleached reds, blues, greens and pinks the visible representation of human propensity for waste.
Photographer: Brendon Thorne/Getty Images