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Possible solution to plastic waste found

The Race for Water Foundation has developed a machine that could be the solution to the world’s problem of plastic wastes leaking into oceans. 

In their 2017-2021 odysseys, the Foundation, through a specialised team on board the revolutionary Race for Water, are raising awareness on the importance of protecting the ocean and the machine. 

Media content manager for the Foundation, Peter Charaf told the Samoa Observer that the Dominican Republic, Easter Islands and Peru are already working with them to implement system, and studies are being carried out in Myra and Borabora. 

“The idea is to check the situation in each place and advise whether or not the machine will be a good solution for that place,” Mr. Charaf said. 

The Foundation, together with their industrial partner ETIA, produced the technology and for some countries such as Samoa they are promoting the Biogreen 300 – capable of transforming end-of-life plastics into energy, be it gas or electricity. 

Technician, Anne Le Chantoux said it’s a big gain for Dominican Republic, Easter Islands and Peru to have the machine because their electricity cost is very high and the machine solves the problem by using plastics to produce low cost energy. 

“If we are talking about Samoa then the size of the system would be the Biogreen 300, and that’s exactly the size of the population,” Mr. Charaf said. 

“Biogreen 300 is what we are pushing the most because it’s dealing with five tonnes of waste per day, which is really convenient for most of the places. There are big systems that exists, and the smaller one that we built initially just to check the data and it happens to be a good size of small islands also.

“So if you have proper plastics, you can look for a price of electricity at 0.35 cents per kilowats. It depends on many factors. That’s the average price we get, but each time it’s a different study because in each place the situation is different. In many islands we went to, the price of electricity is higher than that. So the solution is allowing to get rid of plastic waste and to produce electricity, I don’t know what cost.” 

What makes the machine interesting is that it also creates a viable economy in place they visit by using local people.

“This is a machine that is in a container, and we don’t have it on board. It’s a machine we offer to coastal areas or islands. We have plastic collectors, aluminum collectors or glass collectors bring all types of plastics they collected because there are lots of types of families of plastics, this plastic is then chopped up into very fine pieces, and then it’s going to enter the machine,” Ms. Chantoux said. 

“The machine slowly heats up the plastics and brings it up to 800 degrees Celsius, it’ not burning, we’re not adding oxygen, it’s really heating it up to separate the molecules and the plastics. We are going to then collect the gas that comes out from the plastic, clean it, and either we can do it into hydrogen or we can transform it into electricity, and then this electricity is sold to the people living around.” 

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