Can recycled glass help restore and protect fading coastlines? The two Tulane University alums who founded startup Glass Half Full think so.
Over the last 200 years, about 50% of coastal wetland habitats have been lost as a result of erosion and human activities. A disproportionate amount of those losses have taken place in Louisiana. Currently, it’s estimated that Louisiana’s wetlands are receding at a rate of over 46 miles per year.
That’s just one of the issues Franziska Trautmann and Max Steitz hoped to tackle when they founded Glass Half Full. The team began recycling glass bottles in a backyard just over 2 years ago. Since then, they’ve refined their recycling process and moved to a warehouse where their team is able to prevent tens of thousands of pounds of glass from hitting landfills every week.
Read More: The World’s Most Sustainable Glass Bottle
Glass Recycling Process
Glass Half Full’s process begins with glass bottles and ends with sand and glass cullet that is used for coastal restoration and protection, disaster relief, green-construction, and art. After sorting the glass in their in-house processing facility, the glass is ground and tumbled into a sand and glass cullet mixture that is then filtered for impurities.
According to Glass Half Full, sand is crucial for rebuilding barrier islands and sandbars. Additionally, returning sediment to wetlands combats future erosion and promotes the return of native foliage and wildlife. Their ultimate goal is to use their recycled sand to begin restoring Louisiana’s shoreline.
Further, sand is also a vital aspect of flood mitigation. Glass Half Full is already providing recycled sand to fill sandbags to protect vulnerable areas and assist in levee maintenance. Because Louisiana faces heightened flood risk that threatens to further erode shorelines, mitigating this risk is an important part of saving shorelines.
Read More: Sustainable Glass – Reuse and Recycle
Techni-Glass is excited to be part of the future of glass. What do you see in the future of glass? With the advancements of the glass industry as a whole and Techni-Glass’s wide and expanding range of custom glass fabrication capabilities, the results are limited only by your imagination.
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