The 2011 Japanese tsunami was triggered by an underwater earthquake that March. The Japanese government believes 5 million tons of wreckage was swept out to sea, with estimates indicating 70 percent sank offshore. The remaining debris is floating in the Pacific Ocean. The first item to beach in Hawaii in September was a barnacle-covered seafood storage bin. Livescience reports the Hawaiian Islands are a hotspot for Pacific junk as wind acts on objects in similar ways. Once all of the tsunami debris was deposited — at the same time — some objects drifted faster than others. Scientists also report the tsunami formed unexpectedly large underwater dunes that could influence Japan’s ecosystem. Scanning the ocean floor to 50 feet, researchers found 65-foot-long dunes that were 6 feet high. Fastcast: Soggy.
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