In 2015, sustainability professional Erik Sumarkho began using his training to conduct research expeditions across Asia Pacific to identify actionable and effective solutions to the ocean plastic crisis. As a half-Indonesian this issues was very close to his heart. The journey took him from the bustling city of Jakarta to the remote island communities of the Mentawai. Knowing that the only way to end this global issue was with the help of others, he formed a team. It included Indonesian recycling engineer Zulfikar and marketing expert Ernesto Sumarkho (aka. brother). This is when F.P.R was born.
We are a for-purpose company made up of recycling engineers, environmental managers and action-takers who are working every single day to put an end to ocean plastic pollution. One belt purchased prevents 10 kgs of plastic from entering the oceans. Funds raised by the sale of each belt provide waste collection, recycling infrastructure, income opportunities and other critical support to coastal communities in Indonesia that do not have access to basic waste services.
As the world’s largest archipelagic nation, Indonesia’s rich marine resources form the backbone of its economy and identity. About 70% of the population lives in coastal areas and the ocean economy generates one quarter of the country’s GDP. Despite its dependence on a healthy and profitable marine environment, Indonesia releases the equivalent of almost 2,000 Boeing 747 aircraft full of plastic into the ocean every year (about 1 million tons). Pollution at this scale threatens to devastate the livelihood of communities across Indonesia. Impacting artisanal fishing practices, sustainable tourism and serving as vessels to spread diseases. As well, it damages the rich marine biodiversity and extensive mangrove, seagrass, and coral reef habitats needed for a healthy ecosystem.
Preventing Ocean Plastic
Waste Banks: Cost-effective waste collection points that allow citizens to exchange plastic waste for essentials like cash, school tuition, and health insurance.
Zero Waste Stores: Alternatives to typical warung or convenience stores that replace single-use problematic soft plastics with refilling dispensers and reusable containers at a lower price.
Recycling Infrastructure: Technology, like baling and shredding machines, that increase the recycling capacity of community waste banks.
Community Outreach: Environmental education programs created in partnership with local non-profits that have deep connections with the communities.
THE RECYCLING SYSTEM
The recycling system is comprised of strategically placed waste banks in river and coastal communities of Indonesia. This cost-effective method is proven to drastically reduce the amount of plastic entering the oceans. Members of the community and waste pickers can exchange their rescued material for cash, school fees and health insurance.