LOOK: Filipino invents water-soluble plastic

Many Filipinos have been doing as much as they can to help out the plastic problem that our planet is currently facing. Notably, a 23-year-old inventor from Cebu, Philippines has made a contribution that could greatly improve our situation.

collage mango seaweed cebuano inventor

Credit: Denxybel Montinola

The plastic problem is quite serious as there have been several red flags being raised on numerous cases with choking hazards to marine and land wildlife to blocking sewage canals that cause flooded roads. In the Philippines, it is reported that 60 billion sachets and 17.5 billion plastic bags are thrown each year in the Philippines.

Denxybel Montinola, a 23-year-old from Cebu, Philippines is a graduate of the University of San Carlos who engineered a bioplastic with the use of pectin and carrageenan (bio-polymers), which come from mango peels and seaweed respectively.

Apparently, he found inspiration from a Facebook video where a researched explained the use of bioplastic from seaweed.

Montinola told RFI: “Theoretically you can make bioplastic made from plants. But the problem of bioplastic is that it’s rare you can get the raw materials, or it is sustainable,” where the Cebuano scientist thought of mango peels, a resource that is sustainable to his home country, one of the world’s top producers of the fruit.

According to the Cebu Daily News, the scientist mentioned that the bioplastic is “more robust and flexible and can mimic the mechanical strength of the conventional plastic” and the plastic will completely dissolve in water without leaving any residue that is harmful to the environment.

“I’ve engineered the bioplastic so it doesn’t have toxic chemicals when it dissolves in the water because all of the materials are completely organic.” Montinola shared.

TheAsianParent shared that for Denxybel,  reaching the goals we have for sustainable development does not require big solutions. Instead, we should be looking at what we currently have and assess what we can do to make the country sustainable.

Do you know any other Filipino inventors?