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Thailand makes PPE gear out of upcycling bottles

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SAMUT PRAKAN, Thailand, Sept 3 – With an abundance of plastic squander but a shortage of personal protecting gear (PPE), Thailand is turning trash into treasure by upcycling bottles into protective clothing for people today at threat of coronavirus infection.

Thousands and thousands of plastic bottles have been collected, shredded and turned into threads to be weaved into fabrics finally utilized for PPE, both for hospitals or Buddhist temples, where monks have been cremating coronavirus victims.

The work comes as Thailand has recorded more than 1.1 million coronavirus infections and 12,000 fatalities due to the fact April this 12 months.

“There are moments where by it is extremely tough to get keep of PPE satisfies, occasionally even if you have dollars, you just cannot obtain,” claimed Phra Maha Pranom Dhammalangkaro, abbott of Chakdaeng temple in Samut Prakan province in close proximity to Bangkok.

“But now we’re creating it out of upcycling plastic bottles, so what’s trash is now beneficial.”

Buddhist monks, including one wearing a PPE suit, encourage pedestrians to donate plastic bottles in Bangkok, Thailand on August 30, 2021.
Buddhist monks, which includes one particular carrying a PPE go well with, inspire pedestrians to donate plastic bottles in Bangkok, Thailand on August 30, 2021.
REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun

Temple volunteers have been sewing orange PPE satisfies for monks, undertakers and scavengers, and PPEs are getting sent to 1000’s of temples in want across the country.

While these are not health care-quality, they give at the very least some safety for all those likely uncovered to COVID-19, and one PPE match can be manufactured using only 18 plastic bottles.

A woman sews a PPE suit for Buddhist monks at a textile mill in Bangkok, Thailand on August 30, 2021.
A female sews a PPE match for Buddhist monks at a weaving manufacturing unit in Bangkok, Thailand on August 30, 2021.
REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun

The fabric for the PPEs is being donated by a textile manufacturing facility in Rayong province, that generally helps make fabrics utilised by some main international brands. At the manufacturing unit, threads are designed from recycled bottles and spun into a huge roll, then weaved into material that will get taken care of to become water resistant.

“This is so that it can prevent particle dust from seeping through and the virus from coming into call with us,” said Arnuphap Chompuming, head of profits and promoting at textile agency Thai Taffeta, which operates the factory east of Bangkok.

Women work in a weaving factory dedicated to producing personal protective equipment in Bangkok, Thailand on September 1, 2021.
Women get the job done in a weaving factory focused to generating private protective products in Bangkok, Thailand on September 1, 2021.
REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun

Some 18 million plastic bottles have been applied due to the fact the middle of very last yr to make material for PPEs, which have been despatched to hospitals close to the place, he included.

The Chakdaeng temple abbot claimed the upcycling project was supporting to guarantee a lot more people exposed to the coronavirus have been safeguarded, not only professional medical experts.

Plastic bottles are dumped in a donation crate by a store in Bangkok, Thailand.
Plastic bottles are dumped in a donation crate by a retail outlet in Bangkok, Thailand.
REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun

“We’re conserving lives and the atmosphere as well,” he mentioned.

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