Innovatively addressing plastic pollution and waste management
According to the United Nations, international plastic production has ballooned nearly 300 times in the last 65 years. A majority of discarded plastic makes it into the global water stream, eventually leading to our oceans.
The most recent available data indicates that less than 15% of total PET plastic waste is recycled in Armenia compared with the global average of 50%. There is no data available for other types of plastic. Collected bottles are processed into flakes and mainly exported to Germany and Russia. The rest remains in the local environment—burdening landfills, contaminating water sources and farmland, and posing risks to biodiversity and public health.
There are several risks and constraints that discourage investment in plastic waste recycling, such as inadequate institutions and infrastructure, lack of public-private partnerships, as well as lack of awareness on the importance of waste management and recycling.
As designers and social entrepreneurs, we see plastic waste prevention as both an opportunity to foster awareness and build community as well as grow our country’s economy. We aim to challenge our country to think even more creatively about how discarded plastic can be transformed into commercially viable products, utilizing environmentally friendly upcycling and manufacturing methods.
Proper Plastic is following the simply outlined process of Precious Plastic, world's first open source upcycling studio, developed by Dutch designer Dave Hekkens. Our lab will include injection machine, extrusion machine, shredder and compression machine, which are all based on industrial machines but modified to be less complex and more flexible. The plastic ribbon from the extruder can be used as filament for 3D printer.
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