Brewer chips in glass recycling project in Sabah

KOTA KINABALU: A programme known as CarlsBot will help to address disposal, collection and recycling of glass bottles in Kota Kinabalu for three years.

The programme’s namesake takes cue from its famous flagship brand ‘Carlsberg’ – “Carls” while “Bot” refers to a “ro-bot” or machine that can crush glass “bot-tle”, hence the name “CarlsBot”. 

The CarlsBot machine, brainchild of a native Sabahan inventor, Adrian

Lasimbang of TONIBUNG (Friends of Village Development), was inspired by other glass bottles crushers in the market which he then improvised to provide a solution to the overflow of unrecycled glass bottles that end up in landfills.

It can crush approximately 600 kg of glass bottles in an hour, which is equivalent to 2,352 pints of Carlsberg glass bottles.

With the crushed glass produced by CarlsBot in the forms of cullet, coarse sand and fine sand, Ripple provides the recycled materials to local communities and trains them with entrepreneurial, innovation, marketing and sales skills to repurpose the glass bottle waste into materials which can be used in various beneficial ways. 

Among the usage including to pave roads or be upcycled into handicrafts, furniture and even big ideas like 3D printed housing and Kota Kinabalu shoreline sand retention, while also generating additional income for local entrepreneurs and preserving nature.

These made-in-Sabah CarlsBot machines can generate income for Sabahans whilst reducing glass waste in the beautiful Land Below the Wind.

For the first year, three CarlsBot machines will be made available in Kota Kinabalu at the Tanjung Aru Kinabalu at the Tanjung Aru Marine Ecosystem Center (TAME) and two community centres in Luyang and Kingfisher. 

During a recent launch of the event at TAME, Ripple chairperson Tressie Yap said they believe very much that small actions lead to big changes. 

“We are very proud and excited to collaborate with a reputable brewer like Carlsberg Malaysia who will provide us with the funding to operate, manage and monitor the CarlsBot programme. 

“(It is) a three-year glass bottle ecosystem to effect changes with our network of NGOs and social enterprises including TAME, TONIBUNG, Siung Films, Upcycled Shack,Moyog Innovation House, PACOS Trust and One Ocean Empire on a local grassroots level that will consequently have much larger impacts on the lives of the communities in Kota Kinabalu and the environment of Sabah.


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