The content of this page is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Quick view of the model (open complete model with iMODELER):

present thumbnailKai Neumann (#1) has provided a description of the model with the iMODELER Presenter.


Just returned from a science/business trip from Ghana - this time also visiting some 'hinterland' as well as tourist attractions. Great people (I mean that) and potentially a great country as well. They have the beaches, the forests even near the beaches, they speak English, they have great local food, and at least in the south it was despite dry season extremely green. 

But for the first time in my life I wasn't willing to jump into the ocean - too much garbage in it. I wasn't jogging - too much pollution in the air. Almost 50 percent the people unemployed and most of the others selling stupid plastic stuff. It is a pity. Plastic garbage, old oil spilling cars everywhere.
So, no hotel could afford to pay for cleaning up the beaches or even the streets. Without cleaning, tourists won't come. So my basic question was: how to collect all the plastics? Well, according to studies aid programs fail while direct handling of money seems to work. So why not giving money per kilogram of collected plastics - just for the time, that there still is plastics for a dynamic pricing. One way to make use of the plastics would be to use it  for ties of a railroad instead of the precious wood.
Once tourism kicks in it could continue to pay for the collection of garbage. At the same time, of course, we need to switch to reusable packaging and even bioplastics. Bioplastics could be made from the same factories that could process solar energy as power to liquid in order to store solar energy.
Another aspect is an agricultural economy that remains labor intensive and yet becomes resilient and productive to produce not just for the local market and food and non-food processing but also for exports. This is not further elaborated with this model but comes as an insight from my actual work in different African countries, soon to be published.
There is much more that adds to an overall transition not yet covered with the model. Especially the aspect of a meaningful life could be leveraged as this country and its population could become a proud role model that would emancipate from conventional extension services to define its own way of resilient agriculture, sustainable tourism, and a lot more.


Add Your Comment:

Comments (7)


A great example for social plastic: free bus rides in Indonesia paid with collected plastic
Kai Neumann

Kai Neumann .... way more plastics / garbage in the ocean than expected
Kai Neumann

Kai Neumann

here is another study from a slightly different background (refugees) also promoting cash as aid:


Great ideas but may face implementation shocks. However, it ensuring sustainability is very possible
Kai Neumann

Kai Neumann

Wow, thanks for the link, Bernd! What a great initiative. Fascinating, that I haven't heard of them despite all the newsletters from Ellen McArthur etc.
The idea to use it for 3D printing is featured in the open source horizon scanning model as well: though there is some concern that the material mix could be toxic.


Dear Kai,

the solution you are proposing concerning the plastic is already in use in other parts of Africa.

Take a look at:

All the best

Email notification

More models from Kai Neumann