+ Oxygen

+ Oxygen: The Composting Net

ArgentinaArgentina
Year Founded:
2012
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
Start-Up
Budget: 
$1,000 - $10,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

The Composting Net geo-localizes and quantifies people savings promoting the adoption of this healthy practice.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

What if we could produce our own food, organize distribution, be healthy, eat according to seasons and favor diversity altogether?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

In Buenos Aires, we bury more than 16.000 tons of materials each day. Half of that weight is organic. These 8.000 tons of nutrients can be recovered. Argentina is also facing massive erosion problems because of chemical fertilization of its soils. All of this damage the outer surface of our earth is receiving, is aggravating droughts and nutrients flushing towards the ocean. Our scientists say we have 30 years left.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

We intend to raise people awareness about their eating and waste habits. We are showing them the complete cycle that exists behind food. We are connecting the dots. Food is produced, our body takes nutrients, and what´s left can the be used again to grow healthy products. Nature is perfect. Right now the cycle is broken, we are filling the gap. Composting Net first goals are to: 1) Measure Savings for the Net members to be able to quantify and get real data about the project impact. "If it can be measured, it can be improved" Peter F Drucker 2) Geo-Locate users on a map favoring interactions amongst them so as to build community. 3) Educate the community 4) Develop composting systems suppliers 5) Create an online agenda

Awards

We were awarded a price from Buenos Aires Environment Agency: http://www.buenosaires.gob.ar/noticias/se-anunciaron-los-ganadores-del-concurso-tira-tus-ideas-la-basura
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

We develop activities with local governments, neighbors, and any group interested in learning about this practice. People find out that what they thought was waste, isn´t. They discover they can produce their own nutrients, and obtain valuable fertilizer for their soil thus reducing their costs. Right now we are getting very good feedback from families and young generations which understand the importance of reducing waste disposal. We organize events where we show how organic waste is produced (after cooking a meal). Afterwards we teach them about how that scrap can be converted to soil. Later on we show them how to use it to grow food, and finally we teach them how to solve any problems that may arise. Full circle.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

All of our impacts are measured in out "Metrics" tab: http://redcompostaje.org.ar/metricas Till now we have reached a total of: - 656.000 kilograms of waste recovered, - 131.274 kilograms of soil produced, - 317 cubic meters of space saved from land-filling - 1.320 kilograms of CO2 that were not emitted Regarding future, we like to think big. We are going for all. Our goal is to reach the 8.000 tons a day that are being buried right now. We are getting requests from all over the country, and even from Uruguay, Chile and Peru. This project is designed for a high reach.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

Right now we are using Facebook as our main spreading tool. On the other hand we are starting to organize volunteer groups so as to start to spread the word locally. We are working with the Buenos Aires Environmental Protection Agency, both from the city and Buenos Aires. We are also taking this project to universities, and spreading the word in every corner we can. We think composting is something that everyone can handle. We are also developing solutions for all of those who don´t want to compost on their back yards.
Sustainability

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Right now we are developing a discount and benefit strategy that may award users that compost at their house. Financial sustainability is our biggest disadvantage. We sustain this project with scarce resources from Buenos Aires Environment Agency. Nevertheless we keep on moving forward, we know this tool is powerful and useful for the community.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

The other players we found out there, are the ones that right now play an important role providing solutions on our website: www.redcompostaje.org.ar We are trying to unify and open a new market. That is why we think it is important to play together, so we can grow and spread this solution as one.
Team

Founding Story

We are a young group of professionals who were not fitting in their jobs. Once and again we were trying to give birth to new ideas (we are creative), and we kept on receiving NOs for an answer. That´s when we realized that we had to start our way. A new way of making things. A way that takes into account people, the relationships amongst them, as well as the environment and the invisible relationships we have with it! After all, earth is sustaining us, asking for nothing in return, what if we start giving back?!! We started developing solutions. Waste was the first. Organic matter the easiest to solve technically and energetically. This was the beginning.

Team

Our team is composed by 3 Industrial Engineers and an Economist. Some of us studied on public schools, others on private. The group is diverse, we feed from diversity. Ideas are diverse too. That´s key for what we are doing. We put into practice our words. We cook and care ourselves, our relationships between each other, as well as with out surroundings. Music plays an important role too. It helps us stay tuned and motivated for this defying task we are pushing forward. My role is communication and content development. I carry the group vision as well. Gaston is the Net´s project leader. Then Federico and Santiago follow. We work for each other alternating roles. That was the best way we found out to organize ourselves right now.
Background
Please confirm how you heard about the Unilever Awards:

Unilever Online Marketing Campaign

Please confirm your role in the initiative (eg Founder/co-Founder) and your organisational title:

I´m one of the Co Founders

Which of the 8 UN Global Goals (Sustainable Development Goals) pre-selected for this competition does your solution relate most closely to? [select all that apply]

Zero Hunger, Responsible Consumption and Production.

Leadership and the Unilever Awards
Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered.

We worked for private organizations during our studies. We studied at the best Schools our Country has available. Buenos Aires University, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella. We are hungry for learning and helping the world with Sustainable Solutions.

Beyond your existing team, who else are you working with to achieve your objectives, eg partners, advisors, mentors?

Our parents are mentoring us. My father Developed the "Visual Learning Department" for Universidad Tecnológica Nacional. Our friends are hoping for our progress too. This project is generating amazing changes all around us, that´s why we care so much about it.