Reading a news article from the bottom up:
"We knew ten years ago that plastic could be a million times more toxic than the seawater itself," because plastic items tend to accumulate a surface layer of chemicals from seawater, Moore said. "They're sponges."
Moore worries about the plastic-derived chemicals' potential damage to wildlife. The chemicals can potentially cause cancer in humans, he said, and simpler life-forms "may be more susceptible then we are."
Pollutants also become more concentrated as animals eat other contaminated animals—which could be bad news for us, the animals at the top of the food chain. (Read National Geographic magazine's "The Pollution Within.")
Moore estimates plastic debris—most of it smaller than a fifth of an inch (five millimeters)—is "dispersed over millions of square miles of ocean and miles' deep in the water column.
"The plastic soup we've made of the ocean is pretty universal—it's just a matter of degree," he said. "All these effects we're worried about are happening throughout the ocean as a unity."
And the headline for this story:
How many people just read the headlines?