5 Ted Talks on plastics: from the origins to the latest innovative recycling solutions

Inventors, scientists, popularisers… Ted Talks are short, knowledge-packed presentations from experts in various fields.

This platform is an excellent way to share knowledge and inspiring ideas on a wide range of topics, making them accessible to everyone, regardless of their background, and it serves as a valuable tool for expanding one’s understanding of various important subjects, including environmentalism and ecology.

In this article, we have carefully selected five videos that we believe are both informative and entertaining. These Ted Talks offer unique perspectives and valuable insights into the issue of plastic waste and its recycling, encouraging a wide audience to comprehend and value the significance of sustainable actions.

Let’s check out together the topics they cover!

1. Plastic is not the problem

Eleonora de Sabata is a science journalist, creator, and managing director of the European Clean Sea Life project. She has dedicated the last ten years to collecting and studying waste on the coasts, at sea, and on the seabed of the Mediterranean Sea. Her work involved analysing and documenting massive quantities of plastic materials.

The journalist has been tirelessly investigating the origin of plastic waste to understand how to address the issue. According to her, the problem lies not in the plastic itself, but rather in the ways in which we use it and, most importantly, how and where we choose to dispose of it.

Her research has shown that plastic waste is the outcome of a lifestyle that relies on single-use products, which is no longer sustainable. This waste is a result of small actions performed daily by millions of individuals, and the cumulative effect of these actions has a destructive impact on the environment.

2.All plastics are recyclable. Why not recycle them all?

In his persuasive and captivating speech, Jan Jaap Folmer – the founder of Upp!, an innovative company engaged in plastic recycling – highlights the alarming situation of plastic waste and emphasizes the need to invest in machinery and technology to recycle it.

After presenting his company’s revolutionary machinery, he urges conference attendees to take personal action to help the environment while also providing interesting, thought-provoking insights.

3.I Thought Plastic Pollution Wasn’t My Problem …

In this Ted Talk, a very young and passionate ecologist talks about how he realized the serious threat posed by plastic waste and the negative impact it can have on the planet and its inhabitants if not properly managed.

He captivates his audience with his impactful language and vivid imagery, inspiring them to reflect on a crucial question: can I, in my own way, make a positive impact on our planet? These invaluable words of wisdom highlight the strength and determination of the new generation.

4.The One True Solution to Plastic Pollution

Wellsley Brown shows, with evocative images and exciting storytelling, how plastic is now part of our daily lives and how it is almost impossible to live without coming into contact with an object made of this material.

However, the fact that plastic has become an integral part of our daily lives does not signify the end of the world: the issue of plastic waste can be solved through informed approaches and targeted investments.

5. I have never seen it rain plastic

Francesco is an expert in additive manufacturing, which involves creating objects from 3D computer models.

He follows the “waste to resource” philosophy and uses additive manufacturing technology to convert waste plastic materials into new urban furniture and other useful community goods. The goal of his work is twofold – to prevent the introduction of additional plastics into the system and to reuse existing plastics in a smart and innovative way.

Do you want to learn more about these topics? Are You R was created to raise people’s awareness about the significance of plastic recycling. On our blog, you can find extensive information on the recycling process, tips to lead a more sustainable life, and fascinating innovative projects related to plastic recycling.