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ECOLA STATE PARK — Crescent Beach is a majestic place, bounded by thick forest and rocky headlands that jut from the sea, rounded and bird-covered to the south, sharp like sails to the north.


It’s also, as Marc Ward has discovered, a “plastic sink,” one of the spots along Oregon’s coast where thousands upon thousands of plastic fragments spin out of the North Pacific Gyre and settle into high-tideline sands.


Ward, a 54-year-old Seaside native, splits his year dashing between protecting sea turtles in Costa Rica and tracking an increase of toxic-laden “microplastics” on Oregon beaches. Those two vocations are closely related, given the plastic found in the stomachs of sea turtles, seabirds and other ocean creatures.


a “plastic sink” along Oregon’s coast

7. November 2013