A century ago, the first plastic based on a synthetic polymer was invented. From that moment onward, a new kind of pollutant entered the sea; one that took another century or more to degrade. The MIDWAY media project is a powerful visual journey into the heart of an astonishingly symbolic environmental tragedy being caused by plastic pollution. With photographer Chris Jordan as our guide, we walk through the fire of horror and grief, facing the immensity of this tragedy–and our own complicity–head on. And in this process, we find an unexpected route to a transformational experience of beauty, acceptance, and understanding.
Some reports estimate that there has been a 90 percent increase in the density of litter over the past decade. More than a third of the garbage found usually consists of fragments of melted plastic, food wrappers, bottle lids and cotton buds.
If you should see this amazing floating pile of plastic pollution in the Pacific Ocean, it’s called “The Great Pacific Garbage Patch.” It features three million tons of plastic debris floating in an area larger than Texas. An eye-popping 46,000 pieces of plastic float on every square mile of ocean! Humans toss another 2.5 million pieces into our oceans hourly.
Midway Atoll is a collection of three small islands in the North Pacific, and one of the most remote places on earth. In many ways, this film could be shot in many places on the planet where we find tragedy and despair, but here- about halfway between the U.S. and Asia- on an island teeming with life and wonder, it is the proverbial canary in the coal mine.
It is located near the apex of the Pacific Garbage Patch. Much of this plastic cannot be seen, but it can’t be avoided as it comes ashore on these pristine beaches and in the stomachs of the birds. The islands are literally covered with plastic garbage, illustrating on several levels the interconnectedness and interdependence of the systems on our finite planet. Tens of thousands of baby albatrosses lie dead on the ground, their bodies filled with plastic.
Stepping outside the stylistic templates of traditional environmental or documentary films, MIDWAY will take viewers on a guided tour into the depths of their own spirits, delivering a profound message of reverence and love that is already reaching an audience of tens of millions of people around the world.