Ship Board Trash

An oceanographic research ship with 122 people out at sea for 8 weeks can generate a lot of trash! Did you ever wonder what happens to all of it? Today, we are going to find out. There are environmental regulations that must be followed with regard to dumping things overboard, or saving material for recycling, etc. For example, it is permissable to thrown food scraps overboard because they are biodegradeable. The ocean life love this because it is like a banquet for them (see photos below). Burnable materials, such as paper, cardboard, etc. are burned in one of two incinerators located toward the aft of the ship. The other incinerator is used to burn waste oil, after it is treated. A lot of waste oil is generated by all of the machinery and related operations. For things such as metals, certain plastics, and batteries, collection bins are used until the ship comes into port. The JOIDES Resolution has a waste management plan that is adhered to, especially since we are an oceanographic science research ship! After all, we do study nature.