Submitted by: Ukraine British Joint Venture Britanica
Implemented country: Ukraine
Title: The Roof tile Revolution
Britanica was founded in 1994 by Robert Tyldesley. He considers himself a “green” entrepreneur who loves to work on new ideas and inventions. Britanica bears his signature as well. Originally, old British phones were used to build new systems for the Ukraine where there was an especially pronounced demand for these affordable and popular systems. Britanica developed its own recycling- and molding technology for reprocessing of the plastic housings and phone receivers. When modern telephones were introduced to the Ukraine, the business went belly-up. So Tyldesley made a virtue out of necessity, switched to recycling plastic and turned it into roof tile. In addition to a number of other awards, Robert Tyldesley has received an award from the Queen of England for his roof tile revolution.
The recycled plastic stems mostly from household waste that would normally end up in a landfill where it would poison the soil and the ground water. The undesirable und pollutive old plastic was a cheap new raw material that Britanica turned into roof tile. The recycling process is innovative as well: Normally, recycling requires a complex cleaning procedure that uses and contaminates a great deal of water. The Britanica method manages to do without such cleaning. The new roof tile is made in the Ukraine, South Africa and in a number of other developing countries. Plastic trash has become a socially acceptable construction material. Now the company is taking things even one step further: By building equipment needed for manufacturing similar products and selling them to companies in Eastern Europe, Asia, or Africa.
In the future, Tyldesley would like to simplify the production process so that unskilled workers can be used as well. This would create new jobs for disadvantaged people and the environment would benefit as well because of lower energy consumption and fewer CO2 emissions. Reject rates would go down because cement tile are more prone to break when sawing, nailing, or drilling is involved. Besides, plastic tile have a better insulating effect. With this new and brilliant idea, Britanica has also found access to the markets in India where rice-bowl ashes are now used for tile production instead of sand. Because of its high silica content, rice bowl ashes are an ideal material for roof tile. In India, sand is a fairly rare commodity and so the Britanica idea has become extremely popular because the roof tile is affordable and environmentally-friendly made of recycled plastic.
“We would like to enable the world to create something useful and sensible out of the growing unwanted loads of waste.“