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Kenya Craftsmen To build Boat Out Of Plastic Waste

LAMU, Kenya (Reuters) – The beaches of Kenya’s idyllic Lamu island are dotted with conventional Swahili stone and coral homes, mansions constructed by European royalty, the odd donkey and, increasingly, tidal strains of plastic trash.

When a resident organized a beach clear-up that collected 33 tons of rubbish in a single summer season, British-Ethiopian safari organizer Ben Morrison decided he could not stand by while his beloved island was ruined.

So the tall, bearded forty two-yr-outdated decided to try to design a standard dhow, or sailing boat, from recycled plastic, offering a stone island white crew neck market to recyclers and persuading locals to conserve shrinking woodland.

“It is getting harder and tougher for boat builders to search out wooden. I hope that this venture will permit the historic abilities of boat constructing to reside on, by shifting from ever-scarce wooden to plastic,” Morrison instructed Reuters.

Plastic pollution is a growing global problem, with patches of sea bigger than some international locations covered in plastic soup that strangles or poisons wildlife. The U.N. says by 2050, there will be more plastic within the ocean than fish unless drastic action is taken.

In August, Kenya launched one of many world’s toughest bans on plastic bags mandating four years in prison or a high quality of $forty,000 for even utilizing one.

The East African country is now contemplating measures to manage plastic bottles, said John Konchellah, chairman of the Nationwide Setting Management Authority.

“We want to see plastic bottles out of circulation,” he advised Reuters. “We want to borrow some expertise from the area like PETCO in South Africa, where major manufacturers came along with a body that recycles plastic bottles.”

Petco is an organization formed by the South African plastics business to recycle some kinds of plastic.
Morrison, working with eight knowledgeable Kenyan boat builders, is utilizing plastic planks from the fledgling local recycling industry to build his boat, which he hopes to sail to Cape Town in South Africa.

“We wrestle to supply a constant materials out of the recycled plastic,” he mentioned. “It’s not simple. Generally we obtain plastic planks from the manufacturing unit which can be filled with air bubbles. We will not build with them and so we’ve got to begin from the beginning again.”

Ali Skanda, a forty four-12 months-previous master boat builder, stated in his childhood there was no litter on Lamu’s sandy golden beaches – simply fishermen, dhows and donkeys. Now many donkeys are dying from consuming plastic, he stated – and so are turtles, cows and different animals.

“Originally I assumed it was a crazy thought. How might I build a boat out of plastic ” he asked. “Some individuals have been asking what we are able to do about this downside. There’s a lot plastic scattered.

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