In the boondocks of Brignoles in southeast France, 40 tonnes of animal beard are ample in a barn — they’re the alone locks beatific in by salons beneath a recycling scheme.
After a acknowledged balloon in the adjacent anchorage of Cavalaire-sur-Mer, the beard is destined to be blimp into nylon stockings to accomplish amphibian tubes that will band harbours to mop up ocean oil pollution.
“Hair is lipophilic, which agency it absorbs fats and hydrocarbons,” said Thierry Gras, a beautician in Saint-Zacharie abreast Brignoles and architect of the activity Coiffeurs Justes (Fair Hairdressers).
Awaiting the blooming ablaze from labour inspectors and anti-pollution officials, Gras hopes to alpha all-embracing assembly of the tubes afore anniversary and so advice action adjoin pollution.
He affairs to advertise the forearm-length tubes, which can anniversary blot eight times their weight in oil, for €9 (about R179) each.
At the Brignoles warehouse, cardboard accoutrements are abounding with 2kg of hair, decay from about 3 300 hairdressing salons in France, Germany, Belgium and Luxembourg. The accoutrements are again beatific to addition armpit a few streets away, area aforetime unemployed bodies and academy dropouts are paid to accomplish the absorptive tubes. Gras affairs to reinvest bisected of the auction amount of the tubes in the application centre.
Each beautician on boilerplate produces about 29kgs of beard decay every year, best of it catastrophe up in the debris bin, according to Gras.
Gras said his appetence for angry abuse was alive in adolescence by the 1978 stranding of the Amoco Cadiz tanker off France’s Brittany coast. For conceivably the aboriginal time ever, animal beard was active in the accomplishment to mop up the added than 200 000 tonnes of agitated oil.
When he grew up and became a hairdresser, Gras said he was abashed to ascertain there was no recycling ability for beard decay — which can additionally be acclimated as fertiliser, abreast material, accurate accretion or in baptize filtration.
Gras appropriately came up with the abstraction of creating hair-filled oil absorbers and, in 2015, founded his association.
The tubes, Gras said, “can be acclimated in case of a austere oil spill, such as the one in Mauritius recently, but the abstraction actuality is to abolish micro-pollution on a connected basis” in ports.
The Japanese-owned MV Wakashio ran ashore on a apricot beach off Mauritius on 25 July, spilling added than 1 000 tonnes of oil into a adequate abyssal esplanade boasting mangrove forests and endangered species.
In an accomplishment to help, Mauritians cut their beard and hairdressers from away contributed too. ABC News appear that Sustainable Salons in Sydney, Australia, beatific 10 tonnes of beard to Mauritius. The organisation recycles decay from salons and had 28 tonnes in accumulator in case of a discharge in the Great Barrier Reef.
Mauritians fabricated booms blimp with harbinger and beard to act as sponges that blot up the oil.
According to a Nasa abstraction appear in 1998, 11 340kg of beard should be able to blot about 644 000 litres of agitated oil.
And beard is cheaper than constructed sponges, which themselves actualize waste.
In Cavalaire, a dozen tubes are in use, confined as a pilot for the harbour project.
Philippe Leonelli, the ambassador of the bank boondocks and arch controlling of its port, is blessed to accept a new adjustment for assimilation up the oil leaked from the engines of some 1 100 boats docked in the port.
“The acceptable adjustment (using ample sponges fabricated from polymer) are articles that are not reusable and which we discard” afterwards use, he said. The beard sponges, on the added hand, are washable and reusable “about 10 times”.
“We are all in chase of reusable methods so as not to dissipate our area and our land” with decay artefact storage, added the mayor.
Several river and ocean ports in France accept already apparent an absorption in purchasing the tubes, said Gras. — AFP
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