Giving new life to scraps and plastic

MUSCAT: It isn’t new news anymore that plastic has not only been overflowing out of our landfills but also choking our oceans and threatening the lives of fauna on land and in the seas. Plastic waste is a growing issue that we face everywhere around the world.

Even though it is undeniable that plastic provides various benefits in our society, it is not enough to say that we overuse it, without thinking about the consequences. Our beaches are covered in trash from used bottles, plastic bags, and the newest culprit — used masks.

A recent article showcasing the beauty of Oman’s beaches printed here in Oman Daily Observer was met with complaints as many of Oman’s residents had witnessed the wanton disregard for the environment by the overpowering majority. From the remote shores of Barr al Hikman to the secret beaches in Sur, and even the coastal waters of Muscat including the popular “Love Road” — these areas faced the perennial problem of improper waste disposal.

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A recent visit to the cliffs of Shiya, one of Sur’s most beautiful of beaches, proved to be disappointing as tons of plastic — from water bottles to shopping bags littered nearly a half kilometre of rocky shores.

Several netizens have also reported that even though Masirah Island is already remote, it did not escape from the improper plastic waste disposal. This trash can often be mistaken by animals as food and not only destroy the beauty of the place but also disrupt the lives of many of Oman’s animals including many of the endangered sea turtles.

Single-use plastics have been creating havoc, and in the recent past, more eco-friendly alternatives to single-use plastics have popped up, which are not only better for the environment but also look very cute.

When looking for alternatives, Oman’s very own Bader Mohammed Al Raisi, a young local has taken up the fight against plastic and started his brand, making everyday commodities and reusable products from scraps found in Oman.

Currently, a student, Bader describes himself as a “plastic fighter” and whilst reusing and recycling became a major part of his life, he joined ventures with Ali Al Hajri and started scrap_om.

“We are a brand that is all about recycling waste materials, fabrics, and tools. Using scrap, we like to create new things, functional, little trinkets, bags, and pouches – for both everyday use and for shopping trips,” said Bader.

He showed some of the samples that they have been developing. They lend new life to items that would have otherwise found themselves in the landfills.

 

When looking for alternatives, Oman’s very own Bader Mohammed Al Raisi, a young local has taken up the fight against plastic and started his brand, making everyday commodities and reusable products from scraps found in Oman.

 

“I followed my passion which growing up I always had for maintaining the environment, currently living through a pandemic, it has been hard on all of us, both mentally and financially and this business was a part of me reflecting my love for keeping the environment healthy and by selling my products hoping that like me, people would also join in on the mission of a better, healthier and plastic-less environment” he added.

As can be seen on the page, it isn’t just reusable bags made from scrap fabric, but little knick-knacks all handcrafted and hand-painted right here in Oman.

An empty shell of a coconut? In their hands, it became cute, ethnic accessories and necklaces. Bader himself creates pendants, necklaces, and wind-chimes made out of coconut shells that are one of kind. Along with these also found on the page are hand-painted bamboo incense burners and a variety of functional bags.

Scrap_om has just begun its journey towards contributing to the environment. True to any initiative, it would need the public support for it to flourish and for the idea to go far. But while the task is undaunting, the owners of Scrap_om are committed to pursuing what little they could do to help the environment.

For a full range of their products and to kickstart that reduced waste lifestyle, follow them on their Instagram @scrap_om and join Bader on his fight against plastic waste.

“Recycling and reusing and reducing plastic in our everyday lives is a challenge, but its good to believe in yourself and follow through as every little change you make, adds up to result in making something big happen.”