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Small pieces of plastic litter length of Kailua Beach

An expert says it's probably not from Japan

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 04:51 p.m. HST, Feb 24, 2013

Tens of thousands of small blue and white pieces of plastic have littered the length of Kailua Beach, but one expert says it’s likely not from the Japanese tsunami.

The pieces are spread thin, but are extensive.

Chris Woolaway of the “Get the Drift and Bag It” campaign says the debris could be from household items or fishing floats.

It could also be from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a notorious vortex of flotsam about halfway between Hawaii and California, she said.

But it takes years for debris to break down into pieces as small as those found on Kailua Beach, she said, so they are not likely from the March 2011 Japanese tsunami.

Marine plastic is a chronic problem for Hawaii and elsewhere, said Woolaway, Hawaii coordinator for the International Coastal Cleanup initiative.

Deborah Ward, spokeswoman for the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, said it may be impossible to identify the source of the Kailua Beach plastic. 

“There is a lot of marine debris in our waters that is locally generated or may come from other sources in the Pacific,” she said by email Saturday.

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olos73 wrote:
They can use that to replace the sand that is washing away from the eroded beach.
on February 24,2013 | 06:03PM
Bdpapa wrote:
All going up Kaelepule Stream.
on February 24,2013 | 06:47PM
bumbye wrote:
If many people pitch in, it can be cleaned up.
on February 25,2013 | 12:49AM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
Looks like pieces of rental kayaks to me.
on February 25,2013 | 07:42AM
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