Marine litter is one of the main environmental problems facing the oceans. Mainland Portugal and the Azores
Autonomous Region of the Azores share common challenges, namely the policy on the sea and the sea in a waste scenario, since the Azores archipelago is not immune to this global problem either. Studies have already been carried out to quantify/classify marine litter in the Azores.
Considering the socio-economic role of the fishing sector in the Azores, the project is an opportunity to use and develop new and innovative raw materials, transforming marine litter, which is currently little or not valued in this Region, into a market of excellence as a “supplier”.
To meet these challenges, the project will make the most of the studies already carried out by the University of the Azores and Minho and R&D Centres and, together with local communities, will collect marine litter and beach waste to develop new yarns and fibres for new by-products. The main activities include the analysis, characterization quantification of waste, collection, sorting, processing of waste, scientific studies on the fibres obtained development of yarns and fibres and their transformation into insulation fabrics and blankets.
The waste will be quantified, analysed and then presented on a platform for sharing statistical data and scientific studies.
As already mentioned, the project aims to transform waste for the creation of yarn as raw material for new fabrics and fibres for the development of an insulation blanket, with these and other waste from the sea to develop a prototype model of an eco-hut with the new products.
The project will benefit consumers looking for eco-design and efficient solutions, as it will offer unique and exclusive eco-designed and recycled products.
This eco-cabin model/prototype to be developed may be replicated in other Regions that may benefit from the business model, applicable on a global scale.