This unusual raft, Junk, is crafted from 15,000 discarded plastic bottles, old fishing nets, an airplane fuselage, and a solar generator. Designed by Marcus Eriksen, director of research and education at the Algalita Marine Research Foundation in Long Beach, California, the boat embarked on a 2,100-mile journey to Hawaii this summer. Eriksen and sailing partner Joel Paschal hope the vessel will draw attention to the “plastic soup,” some 3.5 million tons of debris that floats in the North Pacific Gyre, threatening birds and marine creatures.

This article originally appeared in Plenty in August 2008.

Copyright Environ Press 2008.