We live in exciting times. Nev Hyman has come up with a solution to both the global housing crisis and the current situation with plastic waste worldwide. He has set the stage for the global roll-out of his innovative method of creating building panels from all seven codes of recyclable plastics.
Nev Hyman, from Nev House, based on the Gold Coast of Australia, joins Marla today, to give us an international perspective on green ways of getting much-needed housing out into the world. Nev has been spending time in the United States, talking about his mission with Nev House and spreading the Nev House message.
Nev has been involved in the surfing industry for 45 years. He has never had a “real” job because he has only ever made surfboards and sponsored professional surfers around the world. He started two surfboard companies, Nev Future Shapes, and Bio Wire Surfboards. Bio Wire Surfboards was sold to the eleven-time world surfing champion, Kelly Slater, in 2015.
Nev’s passion for surfing, and traveling the world, created within him an awareness of the environment. In 1992, he started noticing that there was a lot of plastic in the ocean. He wanted to do something about it and this is how Nev House was born. Nev made the world’s largest surfboard and he surfed it at Huntington Beach with 64 people on it, twice in 2015. This earned him a Guinness world record!
Nev also won an event called Pitch at Palace, where he pitched to Prince Andrew in front of hundreds of people around the world in 2017. This has allowed him to meet and become pals with the royal family. This is because they love what Nev House is doing!
A few weeks back, Nev attended a Go Green summit in Knoxville, Tennessee. At the summit, there was a lot of interest in Nev House, and Nev found it very easy to talk to the people there about taking the waste out of the environment and turning it into houses.
Nev House provides low-cost homes, schools, and clinics, made from unsorted and unwashed recycled plastic. There are some major issues around the recycling of plastics that have to be dealt with before creating a safe, sustainable, aesthetically pleasing, low-maintenance solution. Nev House has come up with a process that allows them to take all seven codes of plastic and create from them lightweight building panels. Most of the plastic that is recycled currently is either code 1 or 2 because the higher numbers become very difficult to recycle.
“Plastic is not evil. The improper disposal of plastic is.”
A quantum shift
There’s been a quantum shift recently with recycling around the world. Now is the time for people to put thought and energy into repurposing through re-design, and this is just what Nev House is doing. About seven years ago, China put out the Green Sword to stop the rest of the world from sending them contaminated plastic. BASF, one of the largest chemical companies on the planet, has started a fund called The Alliance Against Plastic Waste, where 30 of the largest plastic companies in the world pool together 1.4 billion dollars to help innovators to come up with solutions for re-purposing plastic by re-design.
Plastic production is not going to stop. A 40% increase in plastic production is predicted for the next five years. There is not going to be enough bio-degradable plastics to replace the fossil-fuel plastics that are already in the environment, so solutions have to be found for ways to use the plastics that have already been produced to create shelter because housing is the largest market on the planet.
“The demand for affordable, rapidly deployed, low-cost, hygienic homes is beyond anyone’s comprehension. It’s a multi-trillion-dollar industry.”
The McKinsey Report, put out in 2014, was looking for the best solution to the affordable housing crisis that the planet is facing right now. The report stated that there are currently more than 250-million displaced people needing shelter.
“We’re taking the seven codes of plastic and turning it into a modular design that can be built in a day, or two days. Category 5, or Hurricane 5 rated, earthquake resistant, flood-resistant homes that are culturally-correct in their design, to suit whatever culture the homes can be delivered to.”
“We can’t live without plastic. If we didn’t have plastic, we wouldn’t have humanity the way it is now, good or bad.”
How can you take co-mingled plastic and turn it into panels for housing?
A co-mingled mass of plastics cannot be recycled by normal recycling processes like extrusion, intrusion, injection molding, or roto-molding, all of which require pure polymer. Different plastics melt at different rates, so if you try to melt different plastics together, some of them will burn before the others begin to melt. At Nev House, they use a technique with molds and layers of different plastics with bioplastics on the surface, to create panels for housing. This is called “encapsulation”.
“We’re encapsulating everything that could potentially be nasty.”
Nev has found a solution for the environment using proven technology which he can turnkey in six months. He can start taking the plastic waste out of local communities anywhere on the planet and make things happen fast! Cities have been offering to pay Nev good money to take care of their waste because they know that it would cost them a similar amount to take their waste to a landfill.
How can we all individually help?
Support companies like 4Ocean and POP. Nev House has set up a program called POP which is a plastic offset program that will allow multinational companies like Nestle and Coke to fund recycling plants.
To see the biggest surfboard in the world – www.nevhyman.com