An ambitious effort to corral and remove plastic from the ocean cleared an open-ocean trial and is now headed to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
The trial was completed this week.
The Ocean Cleanup, a nonprofit that assembled its floating plastic-capture system at the former Alameda Naval Air Station, successfully completed two weeks of testing about 350 nautical miles off the coast. On Tuesday, the team was given the go-ahead to head another 1,000 miles to a location halfway between Hawaii and California.
That’s where the world’s largest accumulation of discarded junk lurks — fishing nets, plastic bottles, pieces of plastic containers and bottle caps — drifting across an area estimated to be twice the size of Texas.