Americans threw away 33 million tons of plastic in 2013, according to the EPA. How long does it take a plastic bottle to degrade in a landfill? Some say 500 years, some say 1,000. Plastic hasn’t been around long enough. We (in our lifetime) will never know how long today’s petroleum-based plastic bottles take to break down in the environment. But we can do something with them while they’re around.
Polli’s self interlocking plastic bricks are translucent thereby allowing the play of natural light to shine through. The manufacturers add they are good thermal and sound insulators and can withstand hurricane force winds. No BPA, but wish they could make the fireproof backing curtain for walls out of something other than PVC. Can be used for walls, greenhouses, roofs, etc.
Ecological House: Constructed with 8,000 bottles with composting toilets and a solar water heating system. The green roof can weigh 30 tons when wet and has been supported by the walls without any extra reinforcement. It is the first house in the world made from PET bottles without using cement in the walls.
Tomislav Radovanic, a retired math professor from central Serbia has built a house of waste plastic. “The house is comfortable and it practically cost me nothing,” Radovanovic said, adding that the bottles are good insulators. The foundation is concrete but all else is plastic; gutters, windows and furniture are made from recycled bottles.
Eco Tec’s Sky Field House: The first vaulted ceiling using PET bottles.
All Eco-tec projects have a strong social focus. Most of the PET bottles used are recovered in clean-up campaigns and recycling drives. The community then fills them with sand. They train the unemployed and handicapped in their construction methods. They build water tanks, schools, community centers, urban benches as well as homes. Andreas Froese, Eco-Tec’s inventor hopes to also build some PET homes in Haiti utilizing construction debris. Most of the PET bottles used are recovered in clean-up campaigns and recycling drives.
Ecological Bottle House, near the Iguazu Falls, Misiones, Argentina.
Alfredo Santa Cruz and his family built this house and matching play house out of used plastic bottles, Tetra Packs and CD cases. They used 1200 PET plastic bottles for the walls, 1300 milk and wine Tetra Pack boxes for the roof, 140 CD cases for the doors and windows, plus 320 PET bottles for the furniture.