Over the past 2 years, Wasteless World (WW) has grown to become a well known team of inspired individuals that want to make a positive impact on the Bocas del Toro environment, its community, and around the world.
Amongst other environmental conservation initiatives, a key focus of WW is to create an economic model that incentivizes a cleaner environment with regards to the most contaminating waste material, PLASTIC.
Our most ambitious goal was (and still is) to sequester the community's commercial, industrial and consumer plastic waste in the form of 100% recycled plastic lumber. This is an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional lumber that converts what is currently choking our environment into a new valuable resource. This also prevents more unnecessary logging of trees, whilst stimulating the local economy - everybody wins.
The biggest challenges so far have been:
- Making sure that we are legally registered and structured in the right way for success.
- Building a team of inspired and talented volunteers to support an operation capable of delivering on several fronts.
- Finding an appropriate location with 3 phase power to run the industrial machines required to produce the plastic wood products.
- Raising the capital needed to purchase the machines, which are in high demand and difficult to source.
Our biggest successes so far:
- We have successfully registered our organization legally, and we are structured as follows: our foundation, Wasteless World Foundation, is the 100% shareholder of Wasteless World Inc, our Operation. This enables us to produce and sell products such as recycled plastic products through our Operation, whilst legally receiving donations through the Foundation. All profits made through the activities of the WW Inc Operation are donated to the Foundation, and this enables us to continue to fund our environmental conservation work such as the cleanups, as well as develop other environmental, social or educational programs in the future.
- We have built a team of motivated and talented individuals willing to give their time to establish this project. Our team has grown and diversified, including 10 international talents who are currently giving their time, and 14 locals who are now receiving a financial benefit through their activities in our two key programs, the Waste Management Project, and the Lionfish Project.
- We have successfully executed 48 environmental cleanups on both land and sea over the last 24 months.
- Thanks to the support of the community and over 1500 hours of work by Wasteless Worlds volunteers, we can proudly say that Bocas del Toro has its first mid-scale recycling and collection point “The Bocas Recycling Centre”.
- We have launched a successful project to help control the population of invasive lionfish in the waters around Bocas del Toro. Our volunteers have helped us to generate an economy around this project by making jewelry from the lionfish products, and we sell the meat to the local restaurants. This economy has enabled us to support ten local, indigenous fishermen and their families.
- We have successfully developed an environmental education program, which has been approved by three local schools. The key focus is on caring for our natural resources and the 3 R’s, Reduce, Reuse & Recycle. We will continue to grow and implement this project in 2023.
- Thanks to the support of a local philanthropist we have sourced and purchased a 35 foot cayuco named “Dr. Ben” in recognition of the founder of floating doctors and their commitment to a healthier community and environment for Bocas del Toro. We are now ready to launch, for businesses and residents that don’t have land access, starting with Isla Carinero in the coming weeks.
We are wiser and more motivated than ever to reach our initial goal, and thanks to our reputation and reach across the country an amazing opportunity has been presented to us which will enable us to address the last 2 of the previously mentioned challenges.
As it stands there are 3 companies in Panama that are producing plastic Lumber, last week we were contacted by one of the three established companies that produce recycled plastic lumber in Panama, explaining that they are selling their machinery and closing down due to a sensitive family issue of the Operations Director and majority share owner. Due to his circumstances, the machinery and tooling are priced for a quick sale, and the owner already has several interested parties. The site has all of the machinery and tooling we need to produce our plastic wood products, and is located in Changuinola. Getting the machinery to the islands and finding the right location with 3 phase power has been a constant challenge and has cost us much time and money. The company mentioned have already been through the lengthy and expensive process of acquiring 3 phase power for their machines, which eliminates one of our key challenges.
Our core team have spent the last week in detailed discussions with the majority shareholder of the business. We have spent two full days on site at the factory, familiarizing ourselves with the machines and assessing their condition. Given our research over the last year, we are confident that these machines will produce the quality plastic wood products that we aim to sell, and that we can acquire the machines at a much lower price that we could find on the open market. With the purchase, we will also be acquiring enough raw materials to fill orders for the next 6 months at the current run-rate. Based on conservative production and sales projections, and leaving a generous margin for error, we are confident that the operation could be contributing funding to support Wasteless Worlds mission for a more sustainable Bocas within a maximum of 2-3 months.With your donation, we will make an initial $15,000 cash deposit. The vendor has agreed to finance the rest of the deal, which we will pay back with contributions from the plastic lumber business over the coming year.
To ensure success, we aim to raise $25,000 US to cover this deposit, our legal fees, some improvements to the plant and an initial runway of 3 months of costs.
It is important to point out that we are looking for donors and not looking for investors, our project is to be non-profit with all profits going back into creating a world where we waste less and love more. Success will allow us to start paying our core team, attract further talent to our team and work towards an international NGO status.If you have any questions please let us know right away as we know this is an incredible opportunity for Bocas, it is priced to sell and won’t be available for much longer.
Help us help Bocas.
Tom Wright and the Wasteless World Team
Mob: +507 66974011
Whatsapp: +61 435080875