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Using 3D-printing to recycle plastic

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By Ana De Oliva
Using 3D-printing to recycle plastic

<p>Antwerp-based company <a href="https://www.wryuma.com/">w.r.yuma</a> launched this week what they claim to be the first pair of 3D-printed sunglasses made from recycled plastic.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Feuronews%2Fvideos%2F10155336658738110%2F&show_text=0&width=476" width="476" height="476" style="border:none;overflow:hidden" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowTransparency="true" allowFullScreen="true"></iframe></p> <p>Car dashboards, plastic bottles and fridges, once set for the rubbish bin, are collected and given a new lease of life. </p> <p>Only two small soda bottles are enough to make a pair.</p> <p>The production process involves shredding the plastic and turning them into strings. These plastic wires are then fed into the 3D-printer, where they are melted and layered into the design.</p> <p>Each part of the frame is printed separately and assembled by hand.</p> <p>Founder Sebastiaan de Neubourg explained that one of the project’s aims is to help rebrand sustainability into a more approachable and “cool” term, while bringing awareness to the amount of plastic being wasted globally. </p> <p>According to the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (<span class="caps">ISRI</span>), between 2004 and 2014, the global production of plastics grew from 225 million tons to 311 million tons.</p> <p>An <a href="http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/Packaging_waste_statistics">Eurostat study</a> also shows that during this same period, only 36 per cent of waste produced in Europe was recycled.</p> <p>Belgium is the European country with the highest recycling rates, reusing 73.9 per cent of its waste. </p> <p>While de Neubourg is aware that projects like his won’t entirely change the situation, he believes they may act as “conversation starters”, sparking a brighter future for the environment.</p> <p><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Turning old car dashboards into sunglasses. Launching in September via crowdfunding platform Kickstarter. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/circular?src=hash">#circular</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/recycled?src=hash">#recycled</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/zerowaste?src=hash">#zerowaste</a> <a href="https://t.co/mPNbFmzCiL">pic.twitter.com/mPNbFmzCiL</a></p>— w.r.yuma (@w_r_yuma) <a href="https://twitter.com/w_r_yuma/status/900970449168850945">August 25, 2017</a></blockquote><br /> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></p>