Old plastic bottles and other waste are being collected in Gaza and treated to use to make rugs.
Once collected, the plastic is treated, shredded and turned into small granules which are washed, dyed and dissolved to transform them into the necessary shape to allow for them to be woven into mats and rugs. The mats are then used in mosques, outdoor spaces and in people’s homes.
Hamed Hegazy, the owner of the factory which manufactures the rugs, began his business in 2006 when Israel began imposing restrictions on the entry of raw materials needed by a number of local industries in Gaza.
He says his company not only provides a necessary item for Gaza’s residents, it also helps the besieged enclave rid itself of solid waste.
According to Dr. Abdel Majeed Nassar, professor of Environmental Engineering at the Islamic University of Gaza, in 2019 Gaza produced around 2,000 tonnes of solid waste per day or an average of 730,000 tonnes annually. Approximately 11 per cent of which was plastic waste.