Date: 02/12/2020
Location: Le Havre, Normandy
Trainer: Russell Maier
Participants: 10

On February 12th, 2020, GEA Principals Russell Maier and Ani Himawati attended the Bandung Spirit Conference held at the University of Paris and the University of Le Havre. There they presented their paper paper ‘The Rise of the Asian Regenerative Ecobrick Movement’ and published it here on Ecobricks.org.

The The Rise of the Asian Regenerative Ecobrick Movement paper can be purchased using brikcoins from the GoBrik shop.

ABSTRACT: As direct a derivative of the petrochemical industry, the production of plastic is inextricably connected to the global capital economy. Alas, the resilient properties of plastic that make it so useful also make its safe disposal all but impossible. Over the last decades industrial attempts to dump, incinerate or industrially recycle plastic have been systemic failures. Industrial recycling has largely meant the export of western plastic to Asia. All the while, plastic has proven ideal for globally marketing and distributing highly profitable corporate products– to those very same countries. As the plastic has pilled up, the negative ecological impact of plastic’s degradation has become obvious. In Asia, where the brunt of the world’s plastic waste exports and single-use plastics sales have been sent, communities have banded together and found a solution in ecobricking. A low-tech method of packing plastic into a bottle to make a reusable building block, Asian ecobricking first emerged in in the Northern Philippines. The circular ancestral values of the Igorots, Filipino spiritual and permaculture movements endowed this early rise of ecobricking with principles that distinguished it from ecobrick movements on other continents. By enabling localized, people-powered and long-term plastic sequestration, Filipino ecobricking spread onward to Indonesia and other South East Asian countries. The original character of the movement has been distilled into clearly defined regenerative principles. In the aftermath of the 2018 China Ban, the Philippines and Indonesia find themselves leading the world with a decentralized, non-industrial and localized solution to plastic. The rise of Asian ecobricking points the way to personal and community empowerment and the transition from petro-capital dependence to regenerative living.


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