Seaweed bags replace plastic bottles at the London Marathon

  Sea cushions replace plastic bottles at London Marathon Charlie Crowhurst / Getty Images
More than 41[ads1],000 people will drive the London Marathon on Sunday. When they reach miles 23, they will be delivered edible pods made from seaweed extracts rather than a plastic water bottle.

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(CNN) – Thirsty while running? Here you have a seaweed ball full of sports drink.

More than 41,000 people will drive the London Marathon on Sunday. When they reach miles 23, they are delivered edible bowls made of tongs extract instead of a plastic water bottle.

There are one-way racers hoping to reduce the large amount of plastic waste generated during the endurance race. They want to cut the number of plastic bottles used by 200,000.

The Ooho Tang capsules are made from a London-based startup called Skipping Rocks Lab.

They can be cheaper to produce than plastic and the thin membrane that forms the pod is edible and tasteless.

"What we use is the building blocks of seaweed," said Rodrigo Garcia Gonzalez, one of the startup's founders. "We remove all the green stuff and the stinking things," he added.

The buckets are biodegraded within six weeks if they are not eaten – far from 450 or more years it takes a plastic bottle to decompose. Sunday races mark the first time they are used on a marathon.

"Marathon is a milestone … we hope we will show that it can be used on a scale in the future," said Garcia Gonzalez. 19659009] The gays are meant for people on the go, as runners and music festivals. They can be filled with a variety of fluids.

"Espresso Martinis has been the most popular product at festivals, where eating packaging is also part of the experience," said Pierre-Yves Paslier, Garcia Gonzalez's partner. [19659009] The duo met while studying innovative design technology in London. They say the mission of their company is to "make plastic packaging disappear."

In addition to floating pods, they also work with green alternatives to cling film and plastic lining used in thrown coffee cups.

Plastic waste flood

Startup works to develop machines that can produce the capsules on a scale, with a view to leasing them to companies that will use them to pack their drinks or other products, such as sauces

. This makes it possible to solve one of the world's most pressing environmental challenges: Plast.

According to a 2017 study published in the journal Science Advances, only 9% of 8.300 million tonnes of plastic is recycled. . Another 12% have been burned in incinerators.

The remaining 79% have been sent to landfills, mistakenly discarded or found in the oceans.

Production of plastic bottles also requires a lot of energy and water. It takes more than five liters of water to produce a standard 500 ml plastic bottle, according to the Water Footprint Network.

[19659000] Recyclable and Recycled

London Marathon organizers take other steps to make this year's event more sustainable.

The energy drinks are served in compostable cups at two other drinking stations, reducing the total number of plastic bottles used from 920,000 in 2018 to 704,000 this year.

All water bottles dispensed this year will at least partially be made of recycled plastic, and the discarded containers will be recycled.

Hugh Brasher, the event director, said the London Marathon wants to lead the way in sustainability.

"The changes and trials we are introducing this year have the potential to change how mass participation events are delivered in the future," he added.

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