An aerial survey released in late May showed that thousands of pieces of man-made debris regularly pile up in waters and on shores across the state. The State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) released a statement saying that much of the debris was tossed into the Pacific, and made its way to Hawaii from as far away as the U. S. mainland and Asia.

The state said most of the debris was plastic, wood, fishing gear, and household items that floated on currents and accumulated near the north and east shores of the eight main Hawaiian islands.

According to the survey, Niihau was the island most affected, with over 8,000 pieces of debris, while Oahu collected about 1,000 pieces.

DLNR’s report did not state whether local sources, such as the state’s storm drain system, contributed to the problem, but the report does show that debris found in state waters can accumulate easily, polluting the ocean and harming wildlife.

Watch DLNR’s Video News Release