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Saskatchewan students develop a plan to use recycled plastic for construction

Polytechnic School of Business students Tolofari Tamunotonye, Nguyen Thi Xuan Hien, Naunidh Kaur, and Itoro Jones are working to develop a plastic recycling facility in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. They recently showcased their project at the Western Development Museum, an event organized by their school for students to highlight their business innovation projects. All four students are studying in the school’s business diploma program. Together, the four students have formed a business called “Eco Creations” with a starting goal of transforming plastic waste into durable sewer pipes for construction.

The students chose the project as they wanted to focus on sustainability while helping preserve the Earth and solving the plastic pollution menace. Looking at the expected construction boom in Canada, the group is looking at ways to use plastic in the demand for building materials, including sewer pipes.

The group of students intends to utilize readily available waste plastics that currently litter many parts of the environment including open fields, cityscapes, and even the world’s oceans, and they are presently working out the logistics to collect waste plastics efficiently. One of the ideas is to introduce cash-back incentives like aluminum and glass bottle recycling that reward points which can be redeemed to buy plastic sewer pipes in the future.

Starting with plastic sewer pipes, the students hope to eventually expand their product line to include items like tiles. This expansion aims to use various grades of recycled plastic, which not only aids in waste management but could also enhance the strength and durability of the final products. This project represents a significant step towards addressing the recycling challenges of different plastic grades, which are often not recycled under current systems.