Christmas Island, it’s a small, remote land mass located in a very big Indian Ocean, somewhere between Australia and Indonesia, the picturesque views and endemic wildlife make this place a zestfully voracious locale to live and holiday;
So what’s with all the rubbish?
Surely the good island loving folks care more about their slice of paradise than to go so far as to say that they would litter their unspoilt beaches and million dollar views of which they are so accustomed to? Or perhaps, is it the tourists that invade the tropical sun drenched island haven every dry season?
Well neither the locals, nor the tourist have anything to do with this mess, and in fact the local people of Christmas Island are all actually extremely environmentally conscious. After all, for half of the year, the island goers restrict travel to accommodate migrating crab safety. If the eco loving inhabitants of Christmas Island aren’t to be blamed for the big mess littering the sandy outskirts of the island, then who is?
The swales of ocean voyaging pelagic garbage circumnavigating our globe certainly may have something to do with it. Truth be told, due to how remote the Indian Ocean is, no one really knows where this garbage comes from, or how it comes to accumulate in such a mass volume and how it finds its way to the island shores of Christmas.
Recently, the flag was raised globally as to just how polluted our oceans are, in particular the Indian Ocean. The search for missing Malaysian air flight MH370 which vanished unexpectedly highlighted how much garbage was really out there.
Hundreds of objects that were mistaken for the missing aircraft in fact turned out to be millions of tonnes of rubbish, all aimlessly floating upon the ocean current known as the Indian Ocean Gyre. The full rotation of the current takes around 6 years to complete a round trip between Australia and Africa.
Eriksen and his crew whom sailed from Perth, Western Australia, in 2010 first discovered large amounts of rubbish in the Indian Ocean, but no one had any idea as to what extent the rubbish accumulation was, until the Boeing 777 unexpectedly vanished somewhere in the Indian Ocean.
Rubbish regions such as this are known to exist throughout all of the world’s oceans. Most of the garbage patches consist of plastics that are extremely dangerous for wildlife. Many of our ocean living species are in big trouble due to plastic ingestions and second hand poisoning from these pollutants.
This is why Mother Nature is so lucky to have special humans who dare to make a change. Pictured here throughout these images, are local Christmas Island volunteers at Greta Beach. The volunteers enthusiastically devote their time to cleaning up the rubbish the rest of the world forgets about when it arrives and docks upon their untouched coastlines.
The pictures shown here were used with kind permission from two of the special volunteers Peter and Yvonne McKenzie of Wondrous World Images; see their other incredible work here: http://www.facebook.com/wondrousworldimages