Scuba group makes COVID-19 masks out of recycled ocean plastic
Diving school PADI are helping the ocean and humans at the same time by turning recycled plastic water bottles into coronavirus masks.
The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) are making the masks in partnership with Rash’R – a company that sells eco-friendly activewear. Cach masks costs US$20, but comes with five replacement filters. According to PADI, that cost is purely the cost in materials and labour (meaning no one makes any money from the partnership).
"We are not profiting from this product," said Lisa Nicklin, vice president of consumer marketing at PADI Worldwide told CNN.
"We're very much a heart-and-soul organization. We care about the ocean and our diver community, so we wanted to be able to put our hands on our hearts and say that we're not profiting off this difficult time."
There have been more than 15,000 masks already pre-ordered in five different designs based on sea animals, such as whale sharks and manta rays.
"We underestimated how popular they would be," Nicklin said. "I think (consumers) just felt that it was a great thing to do for the ocean while also buying something that they need."
According to Nicklin, the masks have already helped remove and recycle 1,267 pounds of ocean waste.
It’s another good example of that while painful, there are still positives to be had from the coronavirus pandemic.
Esquire now has a newsletter – sign up to get it sent straight to your inbox.