“Choked by polystyrene” - students' words

Over the last few weeks, all students in 6ème have visited a polystyrene and polyethylene recycling plant in Tseun Wan where they were met by the organisation “Missing Link – polyfoam Recycling Scheme”.

120 tonnes of polystyrene and polyethylene, a large amount of which is not absolutely necessary for packaging, are used every day in Hong Kong. Less than 16% of this is recycled and 100 tonnes are sent every day to landfills which are almost full. 

“We went to collect polystyrene rubbish from the street and market before sorting out the clean from the dirty rubbish. Then the staff from the organisation melted the polystyrene in a machine to mould it into cubes since 90% of polystyrene is air. By melting it at 180 degrees, all the air escapes and huge blocks become a tiny portion of what they were before! These polystyrene blocks are sent to China to be turned into tiny beads which will be used to make things in plastic. Another way to shrink polystyrene is to dissolve it in acetone then distill the mixture to recover the plastic residue. It can’t be done for large quantities as there would be too much residue which would emit harmful gases.” Maximilien 

“I really enjoyed this trip because even if I have not contributed much to reducing the polystyrene problem, I learnt that it has to be recycled” Thibault

“They do all this work but unfrotunately it isn’t enough to stop the 120 tonnes of plastic per day!! Even this whole school couldn’t stop all the polystyrene in Hong Kong.” Julie

“I really liked this trip because I learnt lost of things.” Solenn

“I loved this trip because I like saving our planet.” Inès