Small sample of debris generated by Japan tsunami my response.

The March 11, 2011, tsunami in Japan generated a large amount of debris. The debris quickly drifted offshore, dispersed and became invisible to existing observing systems. Recently, predictions of ocean models have been confirmed by direct observations, with the edge of the debris field located end of September only 300 miles northwest from Midway Islands.

Mary Crowley presented at a workshop addressing the tsunami debris approaching the Northwest Hawaiian Islands. All at the conference are looking for solutions to do selective cleanup of the debris in efforts to protect Midway and the Pacific Northwest.


  1. Trevor Gillespie ~ Marcon Engineering Services, Inc. Baltimore, MD.

    Would like to discuss with Ms. Mary Crowley about Intercepting the Tsunami Debris Slick with Clean-Up / Scooping Ocean Vessels prior to the Debris reaching the Pacific Northwest Bays & Beaches, it should be possible to use Trash-Debris Scooper Vessels
    and off-load same into Cargo-Bulk-Type Vessels (Mother Vessels) for Transporting to
    a suitable Discharge Port for Disposal – needless to say this will be a Major Operation, but a lot less of a Problem of having this Debris/Trash wash up in USA. ~ we do have a Major American Ship Operator interested in discussing this proposal.

  2. I’m a stay-at-home-mum living in Texas. However, we love the ocean after experiencing California. We heard about the Trash Vortex some time ago, but there has been no recent updates. Are you any closer in discovering a way to extract the debris out of the ocean and to reduce its impact on marine life?

  3. Hi,
    I have friends sailing a boat back from Hawaii to Vancouver and I am a little concerned about them running into the debris. I am very aware of how difficult it is to see debris while sailing in swells and wind wave but especially at night when you just can’t see debris in the water.

    Is there a recommendation for navigating back to avoid the field?

    You help would be much appreciated

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