Throughout the world, plastic waste management is the burning question of the day. Statistically speaking, plastic represents 11% of the world’s total household waste. An average U.S. household uses 500 plastic bottles each year. The United Kingdom alone throws approximately 15 million of plastic bottles every day. 80% of the used plastic bottles globally are not properly recycled.
Although the recycling rates are increasing gradually but it is still lagging behind from achieving a 100% stake. It requires a special mention that, plastics take 700 hundreds years only to start composting. On the other hand, 24 million gallons of oil are needed to produce a billion plastic bottles. Just imagine the gigantic amount of fossil fuel we are burning which is the largest source of carbon emissions successfully contributing to cause global warming.
In this situation comes forward one Suffolk, UK based inventor Martin Myerscough to do a little rescue. With his friendly venture, the “Green Bottle”, Martin has stirred the revolutionary replacement to the conventional plastic bottles, a new kind of liquid holder designed as an environment friendly alternative.
The Green Bottle is designed to be split apart. The bottle contains two basic parts: the outer part which is made of a sturdy paper outer shell and the inner liner is made of recycled plastic, which holds the liquid. The paper outer part breaks down quite naturally and is compostable and biodegradable too. Once separated, the outer part can be placed in paper recycling and the inner liner will land in the plastic recycling or general waste bin.
The whole interest towards this Green Bottle intrigued in Martin’s mind from a simple paper-mache balloon his son brought from his nursery class, where the flat paper has been molded. Following further research on pulping technology Martin developed the technique of making the bottle waterproof which he easily accomplished with help of a waterproof bag.
Although his initial target was to deliver a milk bottle, keeping the household usage in mind, the Green Bottle has been developed over time to contain almost every kind of liquids possible i.e. juice, smoothie, yoghurt drinks, squashes and concentrates, water, shampoos, hand creams, liquid detergents, engine oils and so. Irrespective of the content inside, after consumption, the bottles can be recycled in 80% with the outer shell of cardboard decomposed over time leaving only the small remainder of the inside plastic bag.
The finished product further awaited the acceptance and recognition by the dairies to take his creation to the ultimate phase. This was done in ease through Martin’s friend who took him to the Marybelle Dairy and from there in due course Martin got his main client, the ASDA who asked for full exclusivity in turn! What is even more significant is that, Martin’s recyclable, compostable, bio-degradable and highly eco-friendly Green Bottle also has gained the necessary patent registration. It is indeed a striking example that the environmentalists can refer to and boast of. For further details about this innovation, you may visit www.greenbottle.com
The story was first published in INTELLECT Issue no.2, dated July 2012.