Flipflopi
Credits: UN Environment. A close up view of the FlipFlopi dhow, a 9-metre traditional sailing boat made from 10 tonnes of discarded plastic.

Flipflopi, the world’s first boat made from recycled plastic on Thursday started sailing around Lake Victoria in Western Kenya to spread awareness on hazards posed by non-biodegradable material to the environment.

With support from the UN Environment Programme’s (UNEP) clean seas campaign, the boat that is made from 100 percent recycled plastic will cover three East African countries during the expedition.

Joyce Msuya, deputy executive director of UNEP said that Flipflopi is a great African example of the circular economy in action. “The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the need to address the myriad environmental crises, which can only be done through regional and global consensus on key issues like single-use plastic and climate change,” she added.

According to Aki Skanda, co-founder of the Flipflopi project, the boat was built to show the world that it is possible to make valuable materials out of plastic waste.

“By sailing around the lake, we aim to inspire people to create their own waste-plastic innovations and adopt circular solutions that will build greener businesses, whilst also taking plastic out of the environment,” Skanda said.

He said that together with communities across the Lake Victoria region, the sailing is to create awareness and innovative solutions to beat pollution and support a green recovery in east Africa.

Over a three-week period, Flipflopi will sail from Kisumu to several locations in Uganda and Tanzania, engaging with community leaders, conservationists, business leaders, and policymakers while raising awareness and inspiring communities to adopt circular-waste solutions to beat plastic pollution. Enditem

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