Ghanain Innovation (giving plastic a second life)

Nelson Boateng, Ghanaian factory labourer, has developed a solution to Ghana’s plastic waste problem by turning trash into pavement blocks. This initiative is not only a win for the environment but has created jobs for hundreds of young people in the country.  Boateng’s task force includes mainly female workers which empowers his impoverished community of Ashiaman.

Plastic-waste-Visakhapatnam-WEB

This innovative process uses a mixture of plastic and sand to create a 30 cm square pavement block. However, most impressively, these blocks have a durability that spans over 500 years.

Boateng’s team can produce 200 blocks per day but with the use of a hydraulic pressing machine the production capacity may increase significantly. Nelson says that, “there is already [a] market for the product, but because we are not doing this on a large scale, I don’t want to put myself in a position where I will not be able to provide for their demands”.

This dream may soon be realised with backing from the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng. He has offered the government’s support as Nelson’s pavement block is cheaper to produce than anything else on the market, “We are going to provide [Boateng] with that hydraulic machine so that he can scale up and I hope that we can replicate this project in all municipalities and districts”.

Boateng’s remodeling of the standard pavement block will ameliorate the growing problem of plastic disposal. This type of environmental transformation is crucial on a global scale in order to change the prediction by the World Economic Forum that in 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish.

Photo @ http://bit.ly/2tkDolE

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