If there’s nine billion people on the planet by 2050 and we all follow our dentist’s advice, we might end up using around 36 billion toothbrushes or replacement heads in our quest for excellent oral health.
That’s also a lot of toothpaste tubes (assuming we still use them in 2050).
Old toothbrushes have many cleaning uses once they are past their best – cleaning jewelry, bathroom taps and appliances, computer keyboards and even applying hair dye (see my profile page and you’ll know I don’t do this – yet!).
But recycling toothpaste tubes hasn’t been that easy – they just end up in our trash once we’ve squeezed the life out of them.
However, some chemical engineering wizardry developed at the University of Cambridge, UK, can now turn toothpaste tubes and drinks pouches into both aluminium and fuel in just three minutes.