Our dream is to reuse plastic and teach students about recycling with the help of 3D printing
Greenbatch Foundation partners with schools allowing students to collect their old PET plastic bottles through recycling and have it repurposed into 3D printer filament.
This project covers environmental, social and economic impacts across the full triple bottom line. By recycling through Greenbatch we can save plastic from entering landfills, oceans and waste incinerators.
Our facility is designed to handle 300kg or 15, 000 bottles of PET plastic per hour equating to 130 million bottles per year at maximum capacity. By repurposing the plastic bottles, we are preventing the equivalent amount of new virgin plastic having to be manufactured from fossil fuels.
Find out how Greenbatch Foundation is turning plastic bottles into useful 3D printing filament here.
The Greenbatch Foundation helps the community in three ways –environmentally, through education and economically.
Environmentally - It is forecast by 2050 there is going to be more plastic in our oceans than fish. Every year over 300 million tons of virgin plastic is produced with less than 10% being recycled into new products. At the moment, Western Australia (WA) has zero waste plastic reprocessing facilities - meaning not a single piece of plastic put in a recycling bin is reprocessed here in WA.
Education - by working with schools we have access to hundreds of thousands of students across the state. Our schools program allows us to educate students about the environmental issues happening right now. We run workshops discussing the current issues, how students can reduce their environmental footprint and provide opportunities for students to recycle and repurpose their PET plastic through Greenbatch.
Economically – Western Australia has signed onto the container deposit scheme starting mid 2019 - 10c deposit per bottle. When students donate their bottles into their Greenbatch school collection bin, they are gaining 10c credit for their school. For every 350 bottles collected, they receive $35 worth of credit which enables them to get a free roll of 3D printer filament. Greenbatch will help save the schools a significant amount of money as well as rewarding the students with 3D printer filament made from their recycled PET plastic bottles. When the container deposit scheme starts in 2019 it will also help us to expand to more schools and help make the program sustainable.
A Dreams for a Better World grant will cover upfront costs of collection bins and allow schools to start collecting plastic bottles sooner. This will help us with our big dream of every Western Australian school partaking in Greenbatch’s program - recycling and reprocessing PET plastic here in WA (and not exported overseas). We will be taking responsibility for our own waste which is a very powerful educational opportunity for our students, and our future.