A local society has been working to protect the environment for many years. One of its projects, a recycling video called ‘My Life as a Plastic Bottle’, turned 20 this year.

A news release from the Society of High Prairie Regional Environmental Action Committee (REAC) says, this short educational video is “still accurate, still relevant, and still used in Alberta schools and beyond.”

The news release says, “As Alberta moves toward Extended Producer Responsibility for all packaging materials, this video remains a significant educational resource for education around the important reasons to recycle – saving energy, landfill space, and resources.”

REAC shot the video in the Lesser Slave Lake area in 2003, to line up with Alberta’s Grade 4 science curriculum. It has been used in schools in Alberta, Quebec, the U.S. and Australia. The video and the teachers and students guide are on www.reacinfo.ca.

The news release includes a synopsis of the story.

‘My Life as a Plastic Bottle’ follows the story of ‘Grady’, a character representing ethane gas that becomes a polyethylene bottle.

Grady recounts how it feels, as we show the story of them flowing out of the ground and through a pipeline, compressor stations and being made into polyethylene.

The polyethylene pellets chat as they are shipped by train to the bottler; admiring their shiny new shape, they are filled with water, and trucked to a small town store. A group of thirsty kids buy and drink the water in Grady, then miss the recycling bin trying to ‘make a basket’.

A concerned citizen picks up the ‘trash’ and Grady is taken to the Waste Transfer Station. Voice-overs representing an old newspaper, a diaper, and plastic bags bemoan their various fates but Grady is rescued and lands at the Bottle Depot where the bottles have a celebration, meeting their relations from all over.

All the bottles are shipped to the shredder where we cut to post-consumer uses of plastic #1; carpet and a polar fleece garment.

Current REAC projects
REAC is working on a Plastics Remanufacture Project in partnership with the University of Alberta, says the news release. This investigates safety and emissions considerations for small-scale recycling in rural communities that are 250 km or more from recycling centres.

The news release says, “With sponsorship from the plastics and chemical industries, we hope to fund four pilot projects for independent plastics recycling around Alberta.”

One of the characters from ‘My Life as a Plastic Bottle,’ a recycling film made by a local environmental group 20 years ago.

by Leader staff

May 16, 2023

This item copyrighted by   AlbertaChat.com / Lakeside Leaader   Slave Lake, Alberta

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