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Prototypes for humanity: 100 ideas to change the world

origin 1©euronews

A chair that transforms into a life raft, a leftover banana crop repurposed into reusable bags; 100 of the best brains in the world come together with ideas that could save the world.

The brightest and youngest academic minds descended on Dubai for the first time Prototypes Against Humanity event. 100 original, impactful and innovative prototypes and technologies created by students and recent graduates in more than 100 countries have come together hoping to change the world with their creations.

Plastic pollution is a critical global challenge. Germany had an answer on display that would help our oceans; a low-cost river barrier known as the “Trashboom”. The company behind it, Plastic Fischer says 80% of ocean plastic starts as river pollution. The reef targets it at the source as it is 300 times cheaper to collect plastic before it reaches the ocean.

origin 1Low cost river barrier called “Trashboom”Plastic Fischer

Moritz Schulz, co-founder and design consultant of Plastic Fischer GmbH, told RockedBuzz via Euronews: “We started in Southeast Asia, Indonesia. We were there for eight months to develop the thing in the field because we had no prior knowledge of it. We are now increasing, especially in India. We are active in six different locations and have around 30 active ones, 60 full-time employees dealing with waste management and have already collected 340 tons of plastic waste.”

Also at the event was Filipino innovator Aleksander Wieneke who developed a chair that can transform into a life-saving flotation device after experiencing a typhoon at age 9. Like a piece of origami, it transforms into a life raft in less than a minute.

origin 1Chair that can transform into a life-saving flotation deviceNOAH

Aleksander Wieneke, designer at NOAH says, “Decades later, you would expect us to be able to handle flooding better. But one problem remains. And so, I thought, okay, we should be able to help those who are vulnerable. It’s not just the problem of drownings, electric shocks and all the other problems related to floods”.

origin 1Chair transformed into a life-saving flotation deviceNOAH

Another problem that they tried to solve at the exhibition was waste. In Burundi, East Africa, leftover banana crops are processed into reusable bags. The solution is to fight pollution and climate change through a circular economy; add value to banana plantations by creating jobs for unemployed youth.

Jolis Nduwimana, Founder of Warrior Eco-Green Enterprise (Wege) states: “90% of Burundi’s population is engaged in agriculture. After harvesting, you find that there are so many wastes in the banana farm and then we collect them. We are also collaborating with many cooperatives that grow bananas. We are also partnering with more than 86 banana farmers who grow bananas. Then we collect them from them and buy them only by donating a small amount of money and then we transform them into this eco-friendly bag”.

origin 1Leftover banana crops are processed into reusable bags in Burundi, East AfricaWarrior Eco-Green Enterprise

Many of the creators of Prototypes For Humanity had their eyes on the prize, but there could only be four winners, each receiving €24,000 to help develop their idea.

Tadeu Baldani Caravieri, director of Prototypes for Humanity says: “The idea of ​​the award is to reward academic excellence. We look for solutions that use technology in an innovative way. It can also be scalable to other communities and the planet. Therefore, we encourage people to come and discover amazing innovations from over 45 countries. And also, of course, investors, private and public entities who want to get in touch with them”.