Construction of a sustainable collection center for recycling

The Jóvenes Delfines ecology club is building a recycling collection center out of “papercrete” blocks. The students learned this construction method from a University of Arizona group and a cooperative in Nogales. Papercrete blocks are made from used paper (80%) mixed with water, sand and cement. The process is simple, economical, adaptable, and results in lightweight, well-insulated and durable blocks. This green technology results in the recycling of 1.6 kg of paper per block. However, papercrete is much more than a building material. This activity brings the ecology club members, teachers, and families together and provides students an opportunity to demonstrate leadership in a creative and productive manner. At the local level this project breaks down intergenerational barriers and brings together people from all walks of life. The ecology club members extended the impact of this project to the national level when they gave a papercrete workshop for 100 of their peers from all over Mexico at the ecology club gathering in Querétaro.