Greetings, my name is Bo Wen, and as a Civil Engineering Student, I am interested in how modern civilization operate at both the micro and macro level, from processing of materials to construction of mega-structures.
It is sometimes easy to forget the complexity of materials when you are dealing with large structures. Plastic, being quite versatile in its material properties, can disguise itself in many forms, in every corner of the earth. It’s appearances and abilities are so impressive and practical, that we cannot spend a day without touching and using one.
As you know, plastic, behind it’s glorious presence in our life, outside of our lives, its production and disposal are not pretty by any extend. So recycling them is a hot topic for many and a progressive agenda for some.
While it is important to recycle for the purpose of landfill diversion, do you know what it really means? Is 10% recyclable plastic a satisfactory performance for the world of recycling? It certainly isn’t comparing to the 90% rate for metal recycling.
Mike Biddle, calling himself a garbage man, is the President and founder at MBA Polymers, Inc.. He has devoted his entire life into maximizing the potential of plastic recycling. And with more plastic consumed around the world every year, the need for an efficient plastic recycling process is increasing.
As the plastic waste piled up, many first world nations started to transport them to third world nations, thus creating a string of health risks to local residents who ended up making a living off of “garbage”.
While many see plastics garbage as waste, Mike sees it as natural capital. The process of recycling is not only sustainable, it can be economically sound. Want to know how he made plastic recycling possible, check out his TedTalk below:
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If we can recycle plastic so efficiently, what else can we recycle in our life? Many. And that is what the LEED’s materials and resources credits all about — closing the loop by reduce, reuse and recycle, and Mike had definitely made the process of recycling more feasible and effective.
I hope you enjoyed the story about plastic recycling, let us know if you have any cool recycling stories!