Plastic Pollution Challenge
Samal Island is unique & laudable in its having a proactive City Environmental Office, segregating residents & a sanitary landfill. But (1) external sources of single-use plastic waste like Tourists are putting pressure on their limited waste management system, Waste washed up on their shores are unaccounted for and unmanaged; While (2) the sectors – government, business & households – are passing off responsibility to each other rather than approaching the solving of this shared problem collaboratively.
The Linis Islas programme – Pure Oceans’ training, prototyping, & mentorship programme developed specifically for island & coastal communities. Through Linis Islas, communities are guided in designing waste management enterprises appropriate to their locale, resources & culture – while generating value from the waste they are forced to live with. Linis Islas is currently running on Tingloy Island, Batangas; and with WWF Philippines’ communities in Donsol and Davao City. For Samal Island, the training will be cross-sectoral, to encourage more collaboration and value exchange between businesses, governments, CSOs and households.
Linis Islas empowers communities to design waste management solutions for themselves, necessary knowledge for them to live more dignified lives. The programme combines training as needed for each community, close mentorship for the new circular enterprises, circularity-enabling technology when needed, plus product & market development, which are necessary for sustainability.
If Pure Oceans is able to facilitate value exchange among the on-island communities & sectors through a network of community-based waste management enterprises, then Samal Island can prevent further damage from plastic pollution on its Marine Protected Areas, tourist attractions & marine systems.
OUR BUSINESS MODEL. Pure Oceans’ business is the generation of more circular businesses that provide livelihood to the communities, unique value to those communities’ customers, and diverts plastic waste from the reefs & seas sustainably.
Pure Ocean’s revenue model can take a straightforward learning provider service contract, or the same in combination with a seed investment valuation+profit share agreement with the community enterprises.
THE COMMUNITIES’ BUSINESS MODELS. The community enterprises we have prototyped so far have favored two circular design strategies: Upcycling, and Providing Zero-waste alternatives.
PARTICULAR TO SAMAL ISLAND. From our visit, we already saw an immediate opportunity for a single-use plastic upcycling enterprise.
IMMEDIATE APPLICABILITY > Given 1) the high number of resorts and construction work on the island, 2) the need for diversion of single-use plastics and used cooking oil, plus
3) a good population of skilled workers, UPCYCLING PLASTIC INTO GARDEN TILES is an enterprise that can be quickly piloted, then expanded into other garden landscaping & resort industry products once stable.
With the provision of a shredder & the Dept of Science & Technology-approved plastic densifier machine, a CSO can plug into the existing segregation schemes for the households, collect the residual plastics and used cooking oil, melt and mold the plastic and cooking oil into a special garden paver shape unique to the Island Garden City of Samal.
Currently, contractors & landscapers have to import pavers & tiles from outside Samal, so from our initial discussion, there was high interest in pavers and bricks as a product.
MEDIUM TERM > Apart from the garden pavers, there were other opportunities we already spotted from our visit that could address specific pain points identified by the barangays, communities or businesses.
Just one example, Brgy. Miranda wanted more frequent waste collection but cannot afford their own dump truck, if instead they hired an organized group of tricycle drivers, they could reach the same collection targets with less cost.
Traction & Key Metrics
With the GARDEN TILES enterprise as the basis for these forecasts, we can estimated the following performance on key metrics:
Diversion of Single-Use Plastics: 3 Tons of residual plastic per month
Sources of plastic addressed: Generated household residual waste + tourism industry generated plastic waste + shore plastics (the enterprise capacity can accommodate more than just household single-use plastics)
Revenue to Community: USD 2,000 per month (gross)
Green jobs created & sustained: At least 6, max of 12 people
Population served by diversion service: 5,000
Diversion of Used cooking oil: 2,000 liters of per month
With the garden tiles as proof of concept, the hope is that other barangays and CSOs will ask to be part of the Linis Islas programme. If we assume one enterprise per barangay of similar capacity with the Garden Tile business, that’s almost 135 Tons of residual plastic diverted per month.
With only 20Tons of residual plastic/month sent to landfill by households, this leaves capacity to address Tourism & Shore Plastic waste
*Based on Plastic residuals for disposal: 654kg/day as reported in IGACoS WACS x 30
To implement Linis Islas programme with the Garden Paver enterprise as a first prototype & proof of concept, an investment of USD 18,000 would be needed.
USD 12,500 for equipment
USD 5,500 for Linis Islas training for 3 barangays & mentorship
until 3 months of enterprise operations with the pilot CSO