Meraki Bay is a non-profit organization from Valencia, Spain founded in 2018 by Ignacio Alonso and Carlos Andrés with the support of GROWPRO EXPERIENCE company. Meraki Bay is the mastermind behind the creation of the sustainability-driven tree. The organization was born to address the inequality in Cape Town through the use of green-solutions to provide aid to the community. The founder, Alonso and Andrés, were on a trip in Cape Town and wanted to improve the conditions there for the community. Meraki Bay said in an official statement, “We intended to generate a change and we will do everything on our part to achieve it.” As part of their initiative, Meraki Bay built a seven-meter high ebaobab tree made out of 800 ecobricks. The team collected 200 kilograms of plastic found on the streets and beaches of Cape Town to build the eco-themed tree. It took three months to collect all of the materials.
Cofounder of Meraki Bay, Ignacio Alonso explains the materials used to create the ecobricks. ‘Thanks to our leader in sustainability, Marco, Our Houties, and the rest of the coaches, we were able to collect enough plastic through street swopshops and Hout Bay beach to create 2000 ecobricks (two-litre plastic bottles filled with plastic removed from the planet),’ he said. It took seven days to construct the tree. It is made out of 100% recyclable items and will provide electricity to Hangberg Primary School. The eboabab has been fitted with solar panels on the top of the structure to generate a green source and free power for the school nearby.