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What if we have been looking at it from a wrong perspective? What if the solution is not to change the design but the materials itself?

Photo of Filip Koprčina
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What if we have been looking at it from a wrong perspective? What if the solution is not to change our ways, habits or even to change the design but the material itself? There are always people who will not recycle even when you offer money in return (In Croatia there is a pratice that you recieve around 10 cents per plastic bottle, those 10 cents are included in the price). We cannot force people to change their ways. However, what we can do is change the game completely. I propose that we change the material, that the bottles and other plastic cups are made of a more friendly material such as industrial cannabis (the one that you do not smoke) or even algae. So why algae and industrial cannabis? I believe that those bottles would also end up in our oceans, but that would not be a problem. Algae is a plant in the bottom of the ocean and it is a food to herbivorous fishes (fishes that eat sea grass and algae). Those fish species are the first in the food sea food chain and we need them to have a balanced ecosystem. Phytoplanktons are the main food for other types of fishes humans eat. Anyway, bottles made of algae would dissolve in the sea and become the food for phytoplanktons. When phytoplanktons have more food, they reproduce easier and more -> they become food for other fishes -> which then humans eat basically closing the cycle. Furthermore, industrial cannabis is a plant from which we can produce up to 25 000 products and it is believed that it will substitute oil when we run out of it. It is organic and it could be a food for fishes.

How does this research relate to our Use Cases?

To put it simple, it removes non recycable waste from nature and also from our oceans while benefiting human kind at the same time (producing more food for the growing population of the World).

What is a provocation or insight that might inspire others during this challenge?

I believe that others will start thinking in different ways after reading my contribution because I think they are focused only on these offered areas. I hope to inspire "Out of the box" solution and I hope to challenge other to think "out of the box" and given frame. Maybe to think of some materials birds would like to eat since there is a lot of birds on the garbage yards.

Tell us about yourself

Currently a student, I believe my mission is to change the world for good, in a political sphere and also to solve hunger in the World for which I believe I have a solution. I am a big dreamer and I believe that’s why people do not take me seriously and think that my ideas cannot be implemented.


Join the conversation:

Photo of OpenIDEO

Hi Filip!
There are 3 days left in the ideas phase of the circular design challenge! It would be great to see your ideas there, submit your idea via -

Photo of Kenneth Stamps

the better alternative to recycling plastic is to have biodegradable material which looks and functions like plastic.  one such material is collagen.  the same stuff as our hair and fingernails. It was formerly used as a photographic film for pictures. when properly processed, it looks and acts like plastic sheet.  it is biodegradable. thousands of tons of it are dumped into fertilizer each year from food processing plants. 

Photo of Filip Koprčina

It can be done that way. However, processing collagen is a fairly hard and expensive method. Furthermore, you are missing the point of my contribution, and that is that we contribute to the nature's cycle while at the same time removing plastics from our oceans. And one more thing. When you say "the better alternative to recycling plastic is to have biodegradable material which looks and functions like plastic. one such material is collagen" it looks like something you would write as your contribution, please do not undermine mine with your silly and already tried, expensive "solution".

Photo of Kate Rushton

Please do be mindful of the words you use on the OpenIDEO platform and respectful towards OpenIDEO members and their contributions.