When you think about recycling, you probably think about putting plastics and paper in a special bin in the office, or outside of your house. You know it’s important to the environment, but you may feel like returning materials is all you can do. Not so, according to Dave Hakkens! He’s found a way to get people excited about recycling, all while showing them how to get involved in a more meaningful way.
Check out his surprising promo video from March 2016!
Hakkens, however, is going past the simple store front.
Setting up a shop does well in showing people what’s possible in the 21st century. But Hakkens doesn’t want to keep his machines to himself. He’s actually made the blueprints available for free on his website, Precious Plastic (you can check out the specs for the shredder here). It’s definitely not the easiest DIY project, but it’s one that serves a great purpose. He’s even gone so far as to include video tutorials to help you assemble everything.
Part of Hakkens’ mission is outreach. The Precious Plastic website says that, “An important aspect of the project is to create a world wide community of like-minded plastic savers. People working for a cleaner future, sharing knowledge, helping each other, and collaborating.” Hakkens wants to do more than just recycle; it seems that he wants to create a new culture across the globe. Which is why he ended up traveling to the Indian ocean…
Hakkens recently traveled to the Maldives to show the locals what can be done with recycled plastic. He found that several small islands dump all of their waste onto a single island, called Thilafushi.
The Maldives are gorgeous, but one of their main industries is tourism. Because of this they concentrate all of their waste onto Thilafushi to keep it out of sight. Hakkens met with the locals and encouraged them to make some upcycling machines to help deal with their plastic problem. He even went to a school to give a presentation on how to make a garbage can out of plastic bags!
(Watch the footage from this trip below)
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The Precious Plastic Project reminds us that recycling is more than just putting your bottles in the right bin. It shows us what recycling is capable of. Our materials don’t just go to the recycling plant; they’re turned into playgrounds, chairs, or if you’re Hakkens, spinning tops. Even if it’s just upcycling a handful of bottles, at least those bottles aren’t ending up in a landfill or choking out plant life. In a world where technology is booming, it’s inspiring to see someone creating machines that are helping save the environment.
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