The Newest Egyptian Pyramid Is Made Entirely From Recycled Plastic
The massive construction marks the start of 100YR CLEANUP, an initiative to fund large-scale cleanups for the next 100 years
The newest Egyptian pyramid might not be the biggest one ever constructed—that honor goes to the Great Pyramid in Giza, also known as the Pyramid of Khufu—but it is the largest one made entirely from plastic waste. Conceived by zero-waste Australian startup Zero Co and purpose-driven wine brand the Hidden Sea, the 32-foot-tall structure marks the start of Zero Co’s 100YR CLEANUP, an initiative to fund large-scale cleanups for the next 100 years.
“At the Hidden Sea, we’re committed to creating a movement by giving environmentally conscious consumers a simple way to make a tangible difference in preserving the planet,” Justin Moran, cofounder of the Hidden Sea, said in a statement. “Partnering with like-minded, mission-driven Zero Co and kicking off the 100YR CLEANUP with this powerful moment in Egypt allows for greater impact and ensures progress as we drive toward a better planet.”
Made from 20 tons of salvaged plastic—including 1 million water bottles worth of plastic collected from the Nile River—the pyramid stands as tall as a three-story building. The new plastic Egyptian pyramid follows the construction lead of its predecessors and is made from blocks—in this case of salvaged plastic—that are stacked on top of each other. Designed in collaboration with cleanup organization VeryNile, Egyptian artist Bahia Shehab, and production company Matchstick, the pyramid took five days to build. Zero Co and the Hidden Sea conceived the project with the goal to capture the world’s attention and call on business leaders to unite against single-use plastic before the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference, which begins November 6.
Through the 100YR CLEANUP, Zero Co hopes to raise $1,000,000 over the next year to begin funding global cleanups. “We want to put the plastic problem on the environmental agenda,” Zero Co’s founder Mike Smith said in a statement. “We know we can’t do this alone, so we need to get everyone involved.” In addition to calling on industry peers and business leaders for donations, Smith plans to sleep on the pyramid for three nights starting on November 2, and invites the public to sponsor bundles of trash during this time.