Plastic Bank (Website) is a Vancouver-based startup that monetizes waste by paying people to collect it from the oceans.
The Canadian concept was launched in 2013 and is based on a model that pays people in developing nations to collect trash from the beach to be turned in and recycled and sold. The upcycled material is referred to as “Social Plastic” and can be used to create any plastic product, without having to use more petroleum.
The workers can exchange the plastic they find for items, money, or services. Plastic Bank set up a number of convenience stores/bodegas in poor communities overseas where they exchange the plastic for food and necessities.
We think Orlando could have something similar and partner with local or national businesses to sponsor a shop where people can exchange litter and plastic waste for loot – preferably not made with single-use plastic.
Plastic Bank has won multiple awards and was featured in the documentary, “A Plastic Ocean.”