Litre of Light, MyShelter Foundation and Mick Stephenson. Credit Artichoke/ Matthew Andrews.
A creative installation designed to encourage people to think more about plastics recycling is being showcased in London this week.
The ‘Litre of Light’ exhibit, located at the Art College of Central Saint Martins in London’s King’s Cross, is part of the Lumiere London light festival, from 14 – 17 January and is designed to emphasise how recycling and a simple technology can change thousands of people’s lives across the world.
The project is being supported by Veolia UK as part of its goal to highlight the importance of plastics recycling, with a particular focus on families. This is significant, it says, following YouGov research it recently commissioned revealed that children aged 8-15 know more about recycling than their parents1.
The ‘Litre of Light’ exhibit, which is one of 30 artworks and installations in the festival, invites individuals and families alike to learn about issues relating to poverty, sustainability and climate change, and the positive impact innovation and recycling can have.
The artwork has been created by reusing plastic bottles – that might otherwise have ended up in landfill – to create a safe and sustainable source of light for people living without electricity in their homes.
“When it comes to recycling plastics, practice makes perfect, because despite knowing all this we still lose 50 percent of all bottles to landfill,” explained Richard Kirkman, Technical Director, Veolia UK and Ireland.
“We want to encourage the nation, regardless of their age, to think twice about whether they can reuse their bottles for another drink, or turn them into something completely different altogether. And if that’s not possible remind them they can be recycled too.”
As part of the project, up to 500 London schoolchildren are taking part in a series of school workshops, learning about the ‘Litre of Light’ technology, resources and recycling around the world. They’re also discovering how to make their own light bulb from a recycled two litre plastic bottle, building on from their recycling knowledge to address wider environmental topics, such as up-cycling.
The lightbulbs created by the school children form part of the ‘Litre of Light’ exhibit, designed by artist Mick Stephenson, with the help of Central Saint Martins’ students. The exhibition is open to the public and free to attend.
“Come and see this fantastic exhibition and have your own light bulb moment about recycling more plastics, which should be a New Year’s resolution for everyone in 2016,” Kirkman concluded.
Litre of Light
 Research carried out by YouGov, December 2015
 Research carried out by YouGov amongst parents of children aged 18 and under, December 2015
 Research carried out by YouGov amongst children aged 8 to 15, December 2015