Eco-friendly initiatives gain momentum
Sulaymaniyah woman champions recycling with innovative Sulicycle
SULAYMANIYAH, January 25 — In an effort to foster environmental awareness, a Sulaymaniyah woman is encouraging the youth to recycle their plastic bottles using her eco-friendly invention, the Sulicycle. She explains that this recycling mechanism not only processes plastic but also rewards users with discount cards valid at various city establishments, offering savings of up to 25%.
Endemic plastic pollution and littering has blighted the Kurdistan Region’s cities and countryside in recent years.
Przha Awat, the initiator of this project, told 964media, “As a computer science student at Sulaymaniyah University, I developed Sulicycle, a 100% eco-friendly recycling initiative.
“I secured funding from Suly Innovation House, an organization renowned for supporting youth-led projects. They organize contests for young innovators, selecting and financing the most promising ideas. To date, I’ve installed seven Sulicycles in their building, each costing around $1,000.”
The concept encourages people to deposit their plastic bottles into these units in exchange for discount vouchers redeemable at a range of local businesses, including cafes, salons, restaurants, and entertainment venues, offering discounts between 5% and 25%: “These businesses are backing the project pro bono, benefiting from increased patronage and complimentary marketing through our eco-initiative.”
The process is straightforward: instead of discarding bottles in trash cans, individuals can place them in the Sulicycle, which then displays the participating discount providers on a screen.
“My goal is to extend this project throughout Iraq’s provinces,” she says.
The concept of incentivizing recycling through reward systems has reaped rewards elsewhere. Germany has long implemented the robust Pfand scheme, where consumers pay a small deposit when purchasing drinks in bottles and cans, which is refunded upon returning them for recycling at machines found in supermarkets. This system has significantly improved recycling rates, with reports indicating over 98% of refillable bottles being returned in recent years.
As initiatives like Sulicycle gain traction, they not only foster local community engagement in sustainability efforts but also contribute to a broader global movement towards reducing waste and mitigating environmental impacts.