We all love LEGO bricks, right? They stimulate our creativity and bring out our inner child. Well, and children love them too of course. But their popularity means tons of plastics are added to an already struggling planet each and every year.
Well, the Danish company behind the plastic bricks wants to go green by 2030 and develop entirely new materials to let the fun continue without harming the planet. Going green will not only mean that bricks will be made of alternatives to plastic, but that the entire manufacturing process will need to have a reduced carbon footprint.
It will be such a big undertaking! SO. MUCH. PLASTIC!
The main ingredient for our beloved bricks is plastic. Large amounts of the stuff are poured into industrial silos and then turned into fun and precise shapes.
The company, however, is investing in research to come up with new materials that can be malleable enough to be shaped and strong enough to keep giving “Lego ouchies” to barefoot parents! That will translate into years of research, but it is totally worth it.
The first candidate: sugarcane bricks!
The first material to be trialed was the humble sugarcane. Yes, that’s right, this staple crop which grows in hot climates. LEGO made plant-shaped bricks made out of plants! The big “but” is that the material is not biodegradable.
So far, 80 pieces are available in this plant-based material and included in some sets, which represents a mere 2% of the 3,600 different pieces available for designers. But remember, from little things big things grow!
But what can I do now? I love LEGO but also our Mother Earth.
Just follow the 3 Rs: reduce, reuse, recycle. LEGO’s philosophy is to create durable products that can be enjoyed across generations. Sadly, however, a lot of LEGO plastic ends up in boxes and in attics and basements, or worse still in landfill.
If you or your kids are not going to use your LEGOs anymore, consider donating them. You can also ask yourself a hard question: “How much LEGO do I really need?” and think twice before buying a new set. And here’s an idea: buy pre-loved LEGO, which some online folk sell by the pound.
And just how cute is this video, right?
Hopefully the company delivers and this is more than a PR twist!