Ecobricks – great solution for domestic plastic recycling

One of the best ways to recycle packaging is to squash it tight into a plastic bottle, writes u|Chief editor Simon Lewis.

Put the cap back on and it’s an eco-brick, which can literally be used in building walls for houses or garden beds. It’s also a highly efficient way to keep plastic safe away from nature and wildlife.

Keep a plastic bottle in the car, one on your desk, one in the kitchen and one in your bedroom… and start cramming bits of plastic (and even scraps of paper) in there. When the brick is full, drop it off at a recycling depot. There are a growing number of charities and NGOs who collect ecobricks, and some retailers have setup collection bins for ecobricks.


You can help to spread the movement by asking your local retailer to start their own collection bin – it’s far greener for you to drop your ecobrick off the next time you go to the shop rather than making a special trip. It’s also perfect for schools.

Ecobricks are also easy to store compared to other recycling. Pack a whole pile up neatly against the garage wall – you can leave them stacked like that for months with no mess or contamination in your garage. It’s kind of the perfect recycling solution.
This video shows us dropping off a trolley load of ecobricks that we had made as well as collected from friends and neighbours. We dropped them off at Constantia Village Pick n Pay in Cape Town during the lockdown… check out the trailing queue of shoppers. Wild times indeed!

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Image:, taken by Josephine Chan and Ian Christie (Wikipedia Commons)