Davy Jones’ shipping containers.

You might have heard the phrase “acceptable losses” being tossed around in corporate contexts, but Singularity Hub’s taken a closer look at a shipping phenomenon that’s really going overboard:

It’s estimated that 10,000 of these large containers are lost at sea each year, and our understanding of what happens to them afterwards is scant at best. But that’s changing. This month the Monterray Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) sent a robotic sub to investigate a shipping container that was lost in the Monterrey Bay National Marine Sanctuary in 2004. What’s happened to the sunken shipment in the past seven years? It’s become a warren for a variety of aquatic life on the ocean floor, providing a new habitat for species that might otherwise not be attracted to the area. As the MBARI investigation continues to discover the destiny of drowned containers we will undoubtedly learn more about this (possibly) ecologically dangerous byproduct of our modern transportation system.

Bear in mind that “shipping container” is here synonymous with “18 wheeler,” sans engine.

That’s a lot of iPods, bananas, polished quartz, Ikea furniture, drinking glasses, technetium, potting soil, diapers and cans of Raid to wind up where the anglerfish swim….

[via Sam]