Plastic wastes are a nuisance to the environment because they do not decompose. Instead, they pose dangerous challenges to the environment. By living in the ground for 500 years, plastic wastes hinder the thriving of the surroundings. They clog drainages and degrade water catchment areas. Aware of this, two Liberians have embarked on recycling this waste. Abraham L.B Freeman and D.Baccus Roberts ventured into a project of recycling plastic waste into bricks in Liberia. Both entrepreneurs dubbed themselves as “Environmental health and safety advocates”.
“I’m encouraging Liberians to limit the use of plastics to save our environment,” said Freeman to the Daily Observer, at his working point in Monrovia. He urged the population to use only one plastic while going to the market. “People are experiencing flooding in their various communities, because of littering plastics that go into water resources and clog drainages.
“I want to encourage Liberians and other nationals living in Liberia to limit the use of plastic. This is because according to research from the UN and other research organizations, plastic stays more years in our environment. They degrade our water sources, they clog our drainages and have many other negative impacts on our community,” he explained.
Mr. Freeman introduced his colleague who has similar technical skills and vision. “We met in Jamaica Road community on Bushrod Island, and together we educate residents and visitors here on the dangers of plastics”
Creating awareness of plastics waste recycling has borne fruits since its inception. The community now assists the two in separating plastic waste from their garbage. This has consequently simplified the work of recycling and making the bricks. “Baccus and I have started recycling waste plastic into pavement bricks in Liberia.”
Motivation of the project
Upon discovering tons of piled-up plastic waste in the streets of Liberia, the two thought of an initiative. In December 2018, they decided to kick start the project of recycling plastic waste into bricks in Liberia. “Our first production, bricks from waste plastics, removed more than 650 discarded plastic materials from the environment,’ Mr. Freeman said.
Currently, the project is self-sponsored with no external support. “Currently, only Baccus and I are sponsoring the project by putting portions of our respective salaries together, in order to procure materials for producing the bricks,” noted Freeman. Also, the bricks have been tested in a laboratory. “Testing our product at a lab was to know how resistant it will be in the face of a compression test and it is good to be used in construction work.
“We have prepared more than 50 bricks and this is like a politest, we want people to know that plastic can be recycled into bricks. So we took some of the bricks that we produced and sent them out to people to view and test,”
The two brilliant innovators believe that acquiring resources will assist in the mass production of the bricks. Clearly, Ghana is the nearby market where plastic bricks molding machines can be purchased. Using such machines is makes brick making easier and effort-free. Any financial support from citizens and friends will come in handy. It will help them purchase the machines which cost thousands of US dollars.
Benefits of recycling plastic wastes
The project of turning plastic waste into bricks saves the environment. It also provides employment to youths, thus improving their livelihoods. These bricks can also pave yards; create walls and roads in other countries. Freeman concluded by saying that educating the public and the private sector on the use of plastics will improve the hygiene of our surroundings.