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Plastic trash on Kamilo Beach Feb 8 2006 - photo by the Algalita Marine Research Foundation

In conjunction with the IFF's Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef exhibition at Track 16 Gallery, please join us this Saturday as we get serious about plastic trash.

While living reefs around the world are disappearing, a sinister substitute is building beneath the waves. In the north Pacific Ocean a huge gyre of plastic trash is amassing that is now twice the size of Texas and at least 30 meters deep. This "Great Pacific Garbage Patch" is the byproduct of 50 years of human engagement with plastic and an ever-increasing index of our dependency on this quintessentially modern industrial material. The IFF is delighted to present a rare opportunity to hear from the world expert on oceanic plastic trash, Captain Charles Moore, who led the Greenpeace vessel Esperanza on a mission to study the Garbage Patch. Captain Moore's research has revealed that in this area of ocean there are six pounds of plastic for every pound of living phytoplankton. In extended talk - accompanied by videos and actual samples of oceanic trash, including the green plastic "sand" that now periodically inundates Hawaiian beaches - Captain Moore will describe his research on the Garbage Patch and discuss the history of human involvement with plastic. The lecture will be preceded by a workshop on crocheting plastic bags. Both events are free and open to the public. No reservations are required.

Date: Saturday Jan 17, 2009
Place: Track 16 Gallery, 2525 Michigan Ave, Bldg C-1, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2-4 pm: Workshop on Crocheting Plastic Bags
Reef wranglers in chief, Margaret and Christine Wertheim will lead a hands-on workshop in crocheting plastic bags. The Wertheims will discuss the plastic component of the Crochet Reef Project and their own midden of plastic trash that occupies one corner of the Track 16 exhibition.

4-6 pm: Lecture and discussion with Captain Charles Moore, accompanied by large assortment of items from Moore's personal collection of oceanic trash, including samples of a new kind of rock that is formed when plastic garbage fuses with molten lava.