Marine Plastic Debris

Marine Plastic Debris

Storyboard Text

  • Okay, Mum!
  • Kanoa, enjoy your last day before school starts and take Haku for a walk!
  • Haku, wake up! Let's go for a walk!
  • A few minutes later Kanoa and Haku are on their way to the beach.
  • Haku and Kanoa soon reach the beach. The are welcomed by the unusual sight of plastic and other trash.
  • Ah, there is so much trash here!
  • Woof! Oh, look! Over there is a sea lion!
  • Finally someone is helping me! Thank you so much! By the way I'm Holokai.
  • Poor sea lion, let me help you! How did you get tangled in this?!
  • I was chasing some fish and then suddenly I was trapped. I could hardly get to the surface to breath. I was so tired. Luckily, the current brought me to the beach.
  • I'm glad I could help you. Is there also a lot of trash in the water?
  • It's so smelly here with all the trash.
  • You're probably right. Now that I look into the water again, I can see so much trash.
  • There is much more trash in the water than here on the beach. You know, the trash is washed up by the tide. Only a small part of the whole trash comes to the beach.
  • Something smells funny. Let's have a look.
  • Woof! Woof! Come and see this!
  • Don't touch it. It looks poisonous!
  • Yes, it is poisonous. You find this in the ocean too. Plastic acts like a sponge and the toxics gather around the particles. The plastic breaks down into very small pieces. Many animal mistake them for food and eat them...
  • ... This way the plastic enters the foodweb. With every animal that feeds on other animals, the toxins will accumulate. This is known as biomagnification. At some point the poison will reach a deadly concentration and the animal dies.
  • Hmmm. So the animal can be poisoned through the food it eats? If its prey ate plastic or another animal that ate plastic, the toxins will be passed on to the consumer.
  • 
  • Exactly! And now imagine that there is so much more plastic in the ocean than here on the beach! Many animals have disappeared.
  • That cannot be true! The ocean still looks the same from here.
  • The underwater world is out of your sight and thus out of your mind! Unfortunately, I have to leave now. Kanoa and Haku, thank you again for your help!
  • Kanoa and Haku stroll along the shore deep in their thoughts. The conversation with Holokai has left them with an eagerness to find out more.
  • Here is so much trash. I want to know how much is in the water and especially below the surface!
  • I've never liked the ocean. Now I know why.
  • Without noticing their feet carried them to the harbor.
  • Haku, let's find a fisherman that can take us to the ocean. I need to see with my own eyes what Holokai told us.
  • Hello, young girl. What has led you to the harbor?
  • He is a fisherman. Only those smell so strongly like fish and salt.
  • Haku and I just came from the beach. There was so much trash! We freed a sea lion that was caught in it. He told us that the problem is much bigger in the water. And now we wanted to see it with our own eyes.
  • Oh no, I hate boats.
  • Hoho, young girl. You talked with a sea lion. I guess, you've breathed too much haze from some illegally dumped chemicals. But I was anyway going to the sea. You are welcome to join.
  • Come this way. My boat is over there. By the way my name is Ikaika. I've been fishing here for my whole life, over 58 years now.
  • Oh, Haku! He knows that we are going to a boat. He does not like boats. That's why he's running away.
  • Thank you so much! My name is Kanoa and I have gone to school my whole life.
  • A few minutes later, Ikaika and Kanoa are on the boat.
  • I just told you before, I've been fishing here for more than 50 years. You are right, there is now more plastic in the ocean than when I first sailed to the sea. Also, the size of the fish and their abundance decline over the last decade. 
  • So, I bring you now to the fishing spot where I catch some fish if I am lucky. When I fish here, I always also get some plastic in my nets.
  • So, you say that there is not much fish left. Why is that? Do you know if it happened before?
  • I can not say for sure why there is less fish today. And I've never heard any old seafarer's tale that something similar has happened before. This makes me believe more and more that it is due to all the trash in the water. A few other fishermen have told me that they made similar observations.
  • We are here. This is where you somtimes catch some fish. Not far from here is a coral reef or at least what did not die yet due to the pollution. You can go snorkeling if you want.
  • That would be great! Although, I am not sure if I really want to swim with all that trash.
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