Skopelos Dive Center will lead a pilot project named “Reshape Plastic Skopelos’’ which suggest a local scale waste management through the use of low-tech machines based on the open-source protocol of the PreciousPlastic community, to transform part of the plastic waste collected on the island, into recycled useful objects. Together with 11 other innovative projects from 9 Mediterranean countries our proposal was selected by Beyond Plastic Med organization (BeMed), which for a 5th consecutive year supports small-scale initiatives but with scalable and replicable prospects, in the fight against plastic pollution.
The project started in May 2021 and will run for 18months.
Summary of the project:
At first the project will try to record and evaluate the extent of in-water and land plastic pollution and some of its sources, mainly on the island of Skopelos, through clean-up actions and post-surveys of the collected material and by seeking data from the local authorities and other stakeholders contributing to the local recycling and waste management. The aim is to publish the results to the wider population of N. Sporades islands, while raising awareness about the dimension of the problem on a local and global scale and subsequently, following the initiative of the Dutch Company Precious Plastic will try to build a small recycling workspace where collecting and sorting of certain types of plastic (PET, HDPE, PPs) would take place for its further mechanical processing. According to the available technical knowledge acquired and funds, we will try to build a series of simple and accessible (open-source based) machinery and tools which grind, melt, and inject recycled plastic into new molds and forms, allowing on a small scale, the creation of new products out of secondary raw material (recycled plastic), addressed to the local market.
The whole concept adopts an environmental orientation and within a circular economy context, attributes an added value to locally produced and redesigned items from recycled plastic by limiting the discarded local waste while extending the life of valuable plastic material and saving resources. Through this revaluation of plastic waste material and its remanufacturing to new useful products we hope that we can sensitize and motivate the local community and other stakeholders to take action in multiple ways, at an individual or collective level, and primarily to adopt a ‘zero-waste’ and ‘plastic-free’ attitude, while reconsidering inevitable plastic as a material with valuable properties within a more sustainable model of development that respects the natural environment.
A stepping stone for the success of this project as for its continuation and expansion through similar environmental actions, will be the creation of a Social Cooperative Enterprise. The SCE will strive to build local and regional partnerships to encourage the sharing of experience and the replication of the actions implemented. In this context a community platform for dialogue and consultation can be created, bringing together all the actions carried out by state and private companies, non-profits organizations and individuals in N. Sporades islands.
You can get updated about the project’s achievements by following Skopelos Dive Center’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SkopelosDiveCenter/
For more details about BeMed, visit: https://www.beyondplasticmed.org/. The other selected projects are listed here: https://www.beyondplasticmed.org/en/bemed-2021-awardees/
For more details about the Precious Plastic team visit: https://preciousplastic.com