(Photo from https://www.independent.co.uk/)
Like everyone knows, Plastic is a huge damage that has been threatening our planet for decades. Despite the many problems caused by Plastics, not that many people have come up with convenient solutions for it. Therefore, the consequences of those plastics are continuing to threaten all forms of lives on Earth.
In the goal of trying to solve some parts of this problem, my exploration called Precious Plastic have come up with different ideas on how to prevent plastics from going to the ocean, how can we reduce plastics, and especially “How can we INFLUENCE other people to help solve this massive problem?”
At first, the goal of our exploration was to build machines that can shred plastics into small pieces, melt and put it into molds so that we can create different products. The four machines that we have studied are “Shredder Machine, Injection Machine, Compression Machine, and Extrusion machine”.
However, after discussing the price and our skills with our teacher, we found out that building an actual machine requires a lot of money, work, and skills which we do not have. Therefore, we instead find different ways to recycle plastic in our school by sewing them to make different products including bracelets, key chains, pom-pom, etc.
We also went to Siem Reap province to visit two companies, Naga Earth and Rehash Trash to learn about their projects which are helping the planet a lot.
The first day of the trip, we went to a social enterprise company called Naga Earth to study their innovative methods to create Eco-friendly products including hand-wash soaps and paper from wastes. When we got into the organization, there was a friendly staff who did a splendid presentation and demonstration to the machines for us. He introduced the machines and how he turns used-cooking oil into Eco-friendly soaps. First of all, Naga Earth has collaborated with many restaurants and food-courts and asked them for the cooking oil that is left from their kitchen and delivered it into the company. The first step of turning it into Eco-friendly soaps and fuel is doing a chemical reaction in molecular scale to separate the molecules into soap molecules and fuel molecules. Then, they will heat the liquid and make their final products which are Eco-friendly soaps. In addition, I have made my own recycled-sheet of paper by using cardboard, wasted-paper, and cornstarch.
On the second day, we went to another organization which is called the Rehash-Trash and joined a workshop that taught us how to make different products including bracelets, key-chains from plastic stripes.
(Photo from http://www.aha-kh.com/members/rehash-trash/)
There had been many new experiences and lessons about recycling plastics into innovative products that I have learned. I see that those creative ideas of recycling wastes into products that we can use provides many positive solutions to our environmental problems along with the smaller problems that are connected in the activities such as poverty, education, tourism, and economic growth. It changed our minds to see that wastes or trash can turn into beautiful and valuable products that can even help to solve the problems in our community. In addition, we reduced using plastic for 70 percent and that impact us as well as the community that we went, too. They started to realize the problems of plastic and their minds ought to have cared about plastic a little more than when we did not go to the community. There ought to be campaigns or other forms of sharing the lessons and ideas to as many people as possible in order to create a big community of support.
After I have some experiences of recycling those wastes, I have taught other students about recycling paper in a workshop that our exploration have prepared.
(Me during the workshop in our school)
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