According to EcoWatch, Americans throw away 35 billion plastic water bottles every year. So it’s good to know that there are now initiatives around the world that are building houses out of plastic water bottles.
Recycled Home Sweet Home
Ecotech developed the technique to build solid walls out of water bottles. The bottles are filled with sand and stacked sideways, then bound together with mud or cement. TakePart’s article reports that the structures are “well insulated, incredibly strong (20 times stronger than brick), fire resistant, and even bulletproof. A typical two-bedroom home with a toilet, a kitchen, and a living room requires 14,000 plastic bottles and costs a quarter of what a conventional house would.”
Community Initiatives in Developing Countries
While the price is right, there is still much effort required by many people to collect bottles and fill them with sand. But the technique has proved to be successful in many developing countries with large homeless populations. Ecotech projects have organized clean-up campaigns and recycling drives within communities.
Locals also help to fill the bottles with sand and those who are unemployed and handicapped are trained to do the construction. In addition to homes, Ecotech has used water bottles to build everything from schools and community centers to water tanks and urban benches.
Check out these pictures from Insteading.com to see plastic-bottle homes, offices, buildings, greenhouses, and other structures in Honduras, Bolivia, Africa, Serbia, Taiwan, Argentina, and Tokyo. There’s even a picture of a bottle wall constructed in the world-famous Morimoto restaurant in New York City. It was made with 17,400 plastic bottles!
More Plastic Facts from Eco Watch
Before you go, here are a few more surprising facts about plastic.
- Over the last 10 years we have produced more plastic than during the whole of the last century.
- Enough plastic is thrown away each year to circle the earth four times.
- The production of plastic uses around eight percent of the world’s oil production.
- It takes 500 to 1,000 years for plastic to degrade.