Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about Plastic Bank.

About Us

More Information about Plastic Bank

Does Plastic Bank collect marine litter for recycling?

Plastic Bank believes that before one can effectively clean debris from the oceans, the leakage of waste must be stopped in the first place. In other words, the tap must be turned off. For that reason, Plastic Bank’s primary focus is ocean-bound plastic waste: materials that have not been landfilled and are prone to enter waterways.

What countries do you operate in?

We currently have operations in Haiti, Brazil, Indonesia, the Philippines, and, most recently, Egypt.

How do you choose which countries to expand into?

The countries we choose to expand to are ones that have extremely high rates of plastic pollution and poverty. These are countries where the lack of disposal infrastructure and greater dependency on single-use packaging results in a disproportionate amount of pollution.

What is the actual work you do, and which communities benefit?

Plastic Bank sets up recycling ecosystems in countries that lack sufficient disposal infrastructure and have high rates of pollution and poverty. We set up collection locations and employ citizens of those regions to manage these ecosystems. Residents in those regions can collect plastic from their environment and bring it to their local Plastic Bank branch in exchange for money, fresh food, clean water, cellular service, cooking oil, or even school tuition for their children. Collectors are paid a Social Plastic premium in addition to the market plastic value, which ensures a stable, liveable income.

What do you do with the plastic after it is collected?

After being collected the plastic is recycled and processed into new raw material feedstock called Social Plastic which can be purchased by manufacturers to produce more environmentally and socially ethical products. This completes the plastic loop, creating a sustainable, circular economy. 

What is the difference between Social Plastic® and recycled plastic?

While all Social Plastic is recycled plastic, not all recycled plastic is Social Plastic. This is because - in addition to being environmentally friendly - Social Plastic provides a social benefit: impoverished communities gain access to stable income, local economies are boosted, and life necessities, such as food, water, and electricity, become more accessible.

What is the difference between the Plastic Bank Foundation, and The Plastic Bank Recycling Corporation?

The Plastic Bank Foundation is a charity established to support, enhance & grow the world’s Social Plastic recycling ecosystems. It is separate from the Plastic Bank Corporation, which is not a charity.

The Plastic Bank Recycling Corporation is a Social Enterprise. As a social enterprise, we reinvest a majority of our profits to achieve sustainability, grow our reach, and ensure the fulfillment of our mission. You can learn more about this on our blog.

How do you ensure that you don't perpetuate child labour?

Please find answers about our Child Labour policy here.

Why do you use blockchain?

We developed a blockchain-based transaction platform for use on our app. Our app uses cutting-edge technology, such as Smart Contracts, to ensure that all transactions are secure and transparent. This way, economic development created in vulnerable regions is not threatened by corruption or fraud. Developed in cooperation with IBM, our app is built using the same infrastructure as the world’s biggest banks, allowing for infinite scalability.

Where Are The Plastic Bank Headquarters Located?

Plastic Bank headquarters are located in Canada, in the beautiful city of Vancouver, British Columbia.

How to get involved

Answers for those looking to join the Plastic Bank Revolution

How can I get involved?

Individuals can get involved with Plastic Bank by Joining the Revolution and showing brands you care. You can also offset your Plastic Footprint and remove over 84KG (4200 bottles worth) of plastic from the environment by going Plastic Positive. You can also choose to make either a monthly impact or a single contribution to stop ocean plastic.

Companies can get involved by using Social Plastic to make their products Plastic Positive, or by helping us activate ecosystems. We also offer employee engagement programs for Plastic Positive Workforce.

What is a plastic footprint? How large is mine?
  • The plastic footprint is a similar metric to the carbon footprint. Instead, however, it is used to judge how much plastic your lifestyle will contribute to the worldwide trash pile, where it ends up in landfills or oceans. The average plastic footprint of a western citizen is 84 kg (185 lbs). If you want to learn more about your footprint, please visit our plastic footprint calculator.
How can I bring Plastic Bank to my Country?

Visit the Contact Page and select “Help to Bring Plastic Bank to My Country”. Depending on your location, resources, and timing, We will get back to you with the opportunities we have available. You can also Join the Revolution to be the first to know new initiatives are launched.

How can I engage my school with Plastic Bank?
  1. Message us through our Contact Page! Depending on your location, resources, and timing, We will get back to you with the opportunities we have available. We have bottle deposit programs coming soon for any country with an existing Bottle deposit program.

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