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Lesson 13

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Recycling is only possible if the total cost of collecting and shipping is under the middleman or broker's market price.

Under those business principles, plastic bottles and all other plastic marine debris collected on remote islands and isolated small communities by the sea do not meet the marketable standards from the beginning, as shipping cost is already far exceeding the recycle broker's purchasing price. As a consequence of this economic principle, it is not realistic to send marine debris to advanced recycling plants overseas.

The goal of “Re-imagining” is to develop new, on-the-spot recycling technology to reproduce plastic marine debris washed ashore by reutilizing many useful materials through ecologically friendly reproductive methods.

The merit of a fully complete disposal or recycle process at those regions is to promote the recovery speed of beaches, which will contribute greatly to protect locals and the eco-system from health hazards caused by accumulated marine debris.

Re-imaging may not be a permanent solution, but will be a necessary interim marine debris treatment method at remote areas to enhance disposal capabilities.

Making reimaged products also creates the advantage of developing traceable waste that will be more easily recovered and removed when better disposal methods emerge. Using particles of aggregates to create items such as garden and landscape materials are compact, have a purpose, and can be easily removed for proper disposal if necessary.

This project consists of 4 work group fields.
1. Development of a durable, low cost, and light-weight plastic shredder.
2. Development of designing, adhesive technique, and strength testing.
3. Research for minimizing the leak of toxicological properties from reimagined products.
4. Research to recreate marine debris as other resources.
This simplified and inexpensive reusing process will help people where advanced recycling industries in the mainland cannot or do not extend a helping hand.
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