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igus funds collection of 10,000 Kg of plastic waste

igus funds collection of 10,000 Kg of plastic waste

May 9, 2023 6:53 pm

igus supports Plastic Fischer’s initiative and finances plastic waste collection in Indian rivers.
Every year, millions of tons of plastic end up in the oceans. More than 1,000 rivers wash most plastic from land into the sea. Organisations like Plastic Fischer are trying to counteract this pollution. Since 2021, the non-profit company has collected and processed plastic waste from rivers in India and Indonesia. The river-cleaning initiative is supported by companies such as igus GmbH in Cologne, which is financing the collection of 10,000 kilograms of plastic waste altogether.
Plastic Fischer collects plastic waste from rivers before it can reach the oceans to combat marine pollution and protect marine biodiversity. According to Plastic Fischer, its approach is up to 300 times more cost-effective than fishing plastic from the sea. To support this project, igus is financing the collection of 10,000 kilogrammes of plastic waste altogether. In January 2023, 3,340 kilograms were collected and processed in Kanpur and Mangaluru (India). That’s the equivalent of more than 150,000 plastic bags. The financial support gave at least 34 people a regular income. On some days, additional people helped out. Since the initiative started, Plastic Fischer has collected over 520 tons of plastic waste in India and Indonesia. Another project in Vietnam is already being planned. Empower AS verifies the work to provide transparency and ensure that no kilogramme is counted twice.
The triple-L approach: local, low-tech, low-cost
How does collecting plastic waste work? Plastic Fischer has developed its own “TrashBooms” for this purpose, built from locally available materials. “TrashBoom” is a modular system for constructing a floating barrier. It consists of a robust steel frame, tubes as a float and a galvanised grid that stops plastic waste. The on-site team brings the “TrashBoom” to the selected river, anchors the system, launches it and empties it daily. This concept represents Plastic Fischer’s efforts to pursue the triple-L approach – local, low-tech and low-cost solutions. Avoiding high-tech imports saves carbon, time and money and ensures quick repair and high scalability. Full-time jobs are also created locally, which promotes the local economy.
New paths to the circular economy
After the waste is collected, it is sorted. Non-organic material, such as plastic and aluminium, is brought to the drying area and then compressed with a manual or hydraulic press to save space and ensure efficient transport to the next destination. All recyclable materials are fed back into the supply chain. However, the majority of the collected plastic waste is classified as non-recyclable. Instead of being buried in landfills, it is sent for thermal recycling, where it is burned and used as an energy source. Plastic Fischer is looking for alternative solutions and working with local start-ups to increase the collected plastic’s recyclability. igus, based in Cologne, has also set itself the goal of promoting the circular economy for plastics. To this end, the plastics specialist develops products from re-granulated product waste and 100% recycled material. igus has even launched its recycling initiative for technical plastics, “Change”, including an online platform. Furthermore, the company supports innovative approaches such as the HydroPRS technology of Mura Technology, a British start-up. This new technology converts plastic waste back into crude oil in 30 minutes – using only high temperature, water and pressure

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