Loango beach cleanup

This year we decided that it is time for a major beach cleanup in Loango National Park.

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How it works:

We have decided it is time to clean a 100 km of beach this year covering the entire coastline of the park. We hired 40 people from the local village to accomplish this huge task. And also to pump some money into the local economy.

We made four teams of 10 people each that work for 5 days at a time before coming out and rotating with another team. Each team clean on average 350 meters of beach per day.This might not sound like much but the sheer volume of plastic is the determining factor.

In the beginning of the project we documented the items to have an idea what make up most of the trash. To our surprise plastic water bottles are number one, second is cosmetic products followed by flip flops.

Due to the fact that we are so remote and the logistics involved just to take all the staff to the beach we decided to burn the plastic just there and then. We dig a hole around 1.5 meters deep and then burn all the plastic. Afterwards we cover the hole up and move on to the next part.

We also experimented to see how we can maybe recycle the plastic. And started to make some bricks........

 

Plastic bricks:

​                                                      How to make the bricks

The process is fairly simple.The bricks are really strong and look good. They will make excellent paving bricks. They take the element well and is waterproof. The only downside we found with them is the process in making them can cause air pollution in its own way and they are not fire proof. When the plastic is melted it release toxic gasses so a well ventilated area is required.

 

Step 1: Melt the plastic in a large metal container. We used a old oil drum that we cut in half.

 

Step 2: Once the plastic is melted and sand to the mixture. Make sure you mixed it well. The sand must look like it is wet then it is ready.

 

Step 3: Add the mixture to your mold. Let it cool down for 25 minutes before handling your brick. It should be rock hard by now.

 

​                                                      Getting involved

If you have a better idea on how we can recycle the plastic we collect given our remote area or would like to get involve in a project we are busy doing please send us a message for more information.

 

PART 1

PART 2

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