Ecobricks are a simple, low-tech solution to our plastic. Without the need for machines, special skills or capital ecobricks enable us to take personal responsibility for the plastic that we’ve consumed by keeping it out of industrial systems, securing it out of the environment, and putting it to good use in modules and earth constructions.
An ecobrick is a PET bottle packed solid with clean and dry used plastic. Ecobricks are made to a set density to create reusable building blocks. Ecobricks terminally reduce the net surface area of packed plastic to effectively secure it from degrading into toxins and microplastics. Ecobricks can make modular units, furniture, and earthen gardens and structures. The Global Ecobrick Alliance promotes ecobricking as a collaboration powered technology, grounded in regenerative principles.
Ecobricking is a both an individual and collaborative endeavour. It unites people across class, age, economy and continents around the shared intention of caring for the local and global biosphere. The personal ecobricking process raise awareness of the consequences of consumption and the dangers of plastic. The collaborative process gives individual and communities an hands on experience of regenerative living and points in the direction of even deeper regenerative technologies, such as earth building and permaculture.
Typically, ecobrickers use a wood or bamboo stick to manually pack plastic into the plastic bottle. Any size of transparent PET plastic bottle can be used to make a normal ecobrick. The bottle and the packed plastic are clean and dry to prevent the growth of bacteria. Plastic is cut or ripped into small pieces then packed little by little, alternating between adding the plastic and compacting it, layer by layer. The bottle is rotated with each press to ensure the plastic is evenly compacted throughout the bottle. This helps prevent voids and that the packing reaches the requisite solidity needed for a building block applications.
Completed ecobricks are packed solid enough that they can bear the weight of a person without deforming—a density range between 0.33g/ml and 0.7g/ml. Maximizing density minimizes the flammability of the ecobrick while increasing its durability and re-usability.
Cigbricks are a new class of ecobrick design to transform the habit of smoking and the acetate from the cigarette filter into a personal and environmental solution. Cigbricks are made exclusively from the packed acetate filters of cigarette butts (with the paper removed).
The Ocean Ecobrick is a new class of ecobrick especially designed for plastics found on beaches, rivers and in the ocean. These plastics tend to be large, chunky, dirty, and wet and are not suited to make a regular ecobrick. The Ocean Ecobrick technique enables these plastics to be easily transformed into a practical, useful, and reusable building block.
This site and our Ecobrick Guides have been crafted by the Global Ecobrick Alliance to help you get started ecobricking and to establish best practices for the making and application of ecobricks. Our goal is to empower you and your community with the know-how to make ecobricks and build with them and are the result of years of research, experimentation and trial and error by our trainer network around the world.
CoVid-19, Plastic & Ecobricking
The Global Ecobrick Alliance advocates ecobricking during the Covid-19 period to manage our personal plastic and slow the spread of the virus.
Ecobricking is a what we call a regenerative technology. Rather than “sustaining” the status quo, we’re careful that everything we do re-greens rather than greys.
Ecobricks keep plastic & C02 out of the biosphere. Ecobricks raise ecological consciousness. And more!
Jo Stodgel | Santa Fe, USA
“In America, we might have lots of recycling, but that doesn’t mean the plastic goes away.” Jo ecobricks all his plastic to keep it out of the industrial recycling system. Read Jo’s full story…