Guatemala has a plastic pollution problem and Eco-Stores are the solution. Eco-Stores are the world's first stores where people can buy essential pantry items and household supplies in exchange for eco-bricks (empty plastic bottles filled with inorganic wastes) they produce themselves. This project motivates people to recycle plastics where recycling plastics is difficult. By supporting this project, you will help prevent plastic wastes from being burned or thrown into streets or rivers!
Like many other places in the developing world, most areas of rural Guatemala lack a formalized system of solid waste disposal. In addition, the costs associated with transporting materials to a recycling center is unaffordable for the majority of Guatemalan families. This means plastic wastes are often burned or thrown in the streets, uninhabited plots of land, ravines or rivers. This project motivates families to recycle these wastes into eco-bricks and exchange them for items they need.
Eco-Stores address the root causes of the problem of plastic pollution in rural, Guatemalan communities as they motivate people to recycle their plastic wastes. Eco-bricks are made of plastic bottles which are currently difficult to recycle as the costs associated with transporting the materials for recycling is unaffordable for the majority of people. In addition, eco-bricks are filled with plastic bags and plastic films which are currently not able to be recycled in these areas.
We envision walking down the streets of our Eco-Store communities without having to step over garbage. In just 1 year, we estimate that we will prevent over 5,250 pounds of plastic trash from being burned or thrown into rivers or streets and we will collect over 21,000 eco-bricks for building 30 rainwater harvesting systems in communities with extreme water scarcity.