The Filament Factory
Humanity produced 400 million tonnes of plastic waste in 2017. Australia consumed 3.5 million tonnes but only recycled 11% of this by sending it offshore. There are no recycling schemes in the Northern Territory, with all waste sent to landfill or interstate for transport. As of 2018, Australia is no longer permitted to send recyclables to China due to changes in foreign waste legislation. The introduction of kerbside recycling in Alice Springs this year was cancelled. Our recycling nationwide is at a standstill, with plastics being stockpiled in warehouses and buried in landfill.
The Filament Factory reprocesses plastic consumed by Central Australia and produces plastic filament, the ink of 3D Printers. Situated in the township of Alice Springs, a community at the centre of the continent, 1500kms away from the closest major city, resources are scarce, with the majority of consumables arriving from interstate. The Filament Factory is a community operated facility that provides an opportunity for a localised closed loop industry. This is achieved through educating the community about their waste consumption through their engagement with the recycling process, from the depositing of waste, to design in the workshops to the collection of product.