Year 11 student Sean Harrison has shared the information below about the TCEC's newest initiative - plastic bottle recycling:
Most of us think we’re safe in assuming that the plastic water bottles we put in our recycling bins are being recycled into new water bottles. This could not be further from the truth. Currently there is no plastic reprocessing in WA, and only one plastic reprocessing plant in the whole of Australia.
As an easier and more cost-effective alternative, our plastics are piled up by the tonne and sold to overseas markets, mainly China, where 98-99% of it is burned for fuel, and only 1-2% gets recycled.
As plastic burning produces thirty times more greenhouse gases than coal, this is clearly becoming an enormous problem for the security and preservation of our environment.
In just one minute, Australians throw away 2267 plastic bottles. A large majority of these end up in landfills, rivers and oceans. It is estimated that by 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish.
This was the eye-opening message given by Darren and Joe from Greenbatch, a start-up initiative pushing to reverse this imposing environmental issue. Their mission is to build WA's first plastic reprocessing plant, turning the PET plastic bottles we put in our recycling bins into 3D printing filament. This means the plastic is actually being repurposed.
This vision resonated with the TCEC who are now determined to support Greenbatch in making a change. In Term 3, the TCEC began working with Greenbatch to encourage the recycling of PET #1 plastic bottles in and around the school. Special green and purple bins will be placed in a number of locations around the school for students and College families to participate in this initiative. Once the bins are full, the bottles collected will be given to Greenbatch to recycle into 3D printing filament for the College to re-use.
Students are encouraged to recycle plastic bottles purchased from the Canteen in the purple and green bins, and families are welcome to bring their #1 PET plastic bottles to the College for recycling. The more bottles Trinity collects, the less that goes into landfill or oceans. One of the bins will be located at the umbrella drop off point for ease of depositing for families. Please note, the TCEC is encouraging the recycling of bottles that would be getting used anyway, not the purchasing of ‘extra’ bottles and we hope that everyone can get on board.