Working in prosthetics requires the use of several materials. With the use of these materials comes plenty of scraps and waste. At Barber Prosthetics we began to notice just how much material we threw away, so in 2010 we took a step towards running a greener and more environmentally responsible practice. In the 1990s, the City of Vancouver mandated that all companies recycle their cardboard, but Barber Prosthetics believed this wasn’t enough. Six years ago, we began to recycle our plastics, plaster, paper and metal. With a few small adjustments, we created the proper storage space to keep the materials until they were ready to be properly disposed of.
The amount of recycled materials is quite impressive. Over the last six years, Barber Prosthetics alone has recycled approximately 300 kgs of metal (60 bowling balls), 3000 kgs of paper (4 Volkswagen Beetles), 4320 kgs of plastic (1 hippopotamus), and 12,000 kgs of plaster (2 elephants).
Barber Prosthetics was the first prosthetic practice to implement such a responsible recycling program and remains to be one of only a handful in North America. Could you imagine the amount of materials going to waste from other practices and companies that do not use such a simple and easy recycling program? Barber Prosthetics hopes to raise awareness towards responsible recycling and wants to encourage others to discover what they can be recycling to help support a cleaner environment.