Rivers in residential areas, seas, and oceans have been affected by inadequate solid waste management and disposal. As result, huge islands of plastic waste have been formed in the oceans. To counteract and reduce plastics volume in water bodies, we developed an artisanal system for collecting floating waste. We called this system Ecobardas, for our case of study in the Capelo river – Ecuador. The second phase of this project involved the design and manufacture of eco-blocks with triturated recycled waste material (plastic). Eco-blocks are cheap and can be used for any type of buildings. Their lower cost will be beneficial to people of scarce resources or who are in vulnerable situation.
Wastewater generation is a current environmental and public-health problem. In this project, the influence of the species Canna indica and Racinaea fraseri on the removal of contaminants present in domestic wastewater was studied, through artificial wetlands, using concrete filtering media. The methodology was based on an experimental model of a hybrid continuous system wetland, fed with wastewater with 2 individuals of Canna indica and two of Racinaea fraseri. The system was monitored using physical-chemical parameters: pH, chemical oxygen demand, phosphates, ammoniacal nitrogen, nitrates, and total suspended solids. Simultaneously, the apical growth of the plant was monitored. The results demonstrated that plants capture nutrients from the water, therefore contributing to the elimination of contaminants (especially nutrients) in the wetland.
Chocho (Lupinus mutabilis) is a traditional Andean bean that in the last years has gained importance due to its widely appreciated nutritional value. Chochos need to be processed before their consumption because of the presence of alkaloids (chemicals that protect the plant against insect attacks). Chochos are grown by farmers in the Ecuadorian Andes, they are then dried and stored for their commercialization. For consumption, chochos need to be rehydrated, sadly the water is usually discharged. The main issue covered is the unnecessary waste of water which originate from the rehydration of chochos. This project aims to test the possibilities of upcycling the debittering water as an irrigation water for crops.