Electrolux AB, a Stockholm based company, has decided to create a vacuum that not only can perform its traditional duties of cleaning, but also act as a conversation starter. It is a vacuum made from little bits of plastics collected from one of Hawaii’s dirtiest beaches, Kahuku. Here many different sizes and kinds of plastics wash up onto the beach, mixing with sand and other natural debris.

Vice president for sustainability and environmental affairs at Electrolux’s floor care and small appliances division, Cecilia Nord, pointed out that the problem of plastic washing up on beaches keeps growing because  plastic products are increasingly used without being recycled properly afterward. Often times we might learn about an issue such as plastic waste in the ocean and give it a few moments of thought before returning to our own relevant issues in our lives. This problem may not be relevant to everyone’s life at the moment, however if continued to be ignored, it may easily become in the near future a very real problem that effects us all. By creating a vacuum cleaner out of plastic pieces collected from the source of the problem is a creative way to clean up the waste and bring the issue into our homes on a very real level.

This is indeed a very accurate reflection of how we use plastic products today and do not properly dispose them in ways that they may be recycled and re-used. As our plastic bottles, bags, and other single-use plastic items are disposed of, many end up in our oceans where there are now 5 world ocean gyres, circulating plastic in high concentrations. Remember, plastics do not biodegrade, so they remain true to their form for many, many years.

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