Soda Bottles can change lives….

One of the goals of let us work is to try and harness green energy. We are always looking for ways to help improve people’s lives, whilst at the same time, doing no harm to the environment. A lot of people in rural areas do not have access to electricity, much less hot water.

Living by candlelight is a daily reality for people who have to walk to fetch water, have cold baths and cook on a fire. You know that feeling you get after you have been camping for a week and you just can’t wait to have a hot bath, a home-cooked meal, and sleep in your own bed without having to fumble about with a torch to go to the toilet? Well, it’s not quite that feeling, because most of the people in rural areas have never experienced going back to comfort, but I’m pretty sure it’s close. I have no doubt that there are many people, living day to day in rural areas, whose lives could be improved with a little innovation.

 At “Let Us Work”, we have a research centre, where we are testing green alternatives, which require no electricity, but could bring a little comfort to rural homes, through recycling.

We have a number of ideas on the go, but for now, I would like to specifically draw your attention to the various projects that we are testing out, utilizing 2l plastic soda bottles:

 A rural community is busy assembling a solar water heating system made out of piping and plastic soda bottles. They are killing 3 birds with some plastic that is no good to anybody, or so you’d think. First of all, the obvious – they are recycling plastic waste that would otherwise go to the dumps. They are improving people’s lives by giving them hot water (unfortunately only on sunny days, which is pretty much all the time in KZN), and they are using it as a small business start-up, so that they can make a little money.

In our “Let us Work” research centre (which is what we call the section of the garage/garden where we test things out), we have been looking into creating lighting using sunlight (from the sun, not South Africa’s favourite dishwashing liquid) and soda bottles to illuminate homes (as a lot of homes do not have windows). This will also only work when there is sunlight.

The third project involves using, once again, 2L soda bottles and string, to create vertical gardens. These are portable and conserve water, as instead of trickling down into the ground, excess water drains directly into the plants below. They take up minimal horizontal space and are therefore not limited by garden area. This is generally not an issue in rural areas, but it makes them perfect for urban “townships”.

So to summarize, we are going to need loads of old 2L soda bottles (and other sizes too). If you are around the Durban area, please collect for us. Pretty soon, soda bottles will be seen as valuable, and we’ll have made a small difference to the environment. This is how SODA BOTTLES CAN CHANGE LIVES….

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