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EcoFill

Introducing EcoFill, the groundbreaking circular economy app that revolutionizes the way we consume and reduce our waste. With the aim to promote sustainability and eliminate the need for repurchasing single-use products, EcoFill helps users easily locate refill stations for a wide range of everyday items.

Role

UX/UI designer

Project type

Independent passion project

Duration

6 weeks

Tools used

Figma

Canva

Design method

Design ​Thinking

Problem: Marine wildlife is at stake.

Sea Pollution

Marine wildlife is facing a significant threat due to the increasing amount of single-use plastic that is being discarded into our oceans. This plastic waste is wreaking havoc on marine ecosystems, with countless animals becoming entangled in it or ingesting it, often with fatal consequences. Sea turtles, whales, seabirds, and countless other species are suffering as a result of our reliance on disposable plastic items.

 

The problem is further exacerbated by the fact that plastic does not biodegrade, but instead breaks down into smaller pieces known as microplastics, which are even more harmful to marine life. These tiny particles are ingested by organisms at the bottom of the food chain and work their way up, ultimately affecting larger predators.

Over 400 million tons of plastic are produced every year for use in a wide variety of applications.

Only 9% of the plastic ever produced has been recycled, and 19% has been incinerated

At least 14 million tons of plastic end up in the ocean every year

By 2050 there will be more plastic 

than fish in the world's oceans.

How can EcoFill play a role in saving marine wildlife?

Image by Meritt Thomas

Waste reduction

Refilling eliminates the need for single-use packaging, reducing the amount of waste generated. By utilizing existing containers and refilling them with products, we significantly decrease the amount of discarded packaging that ends up in landfills or incinerators.

Reduced pollution

Traditional production of single-use items often involves the use of harmful chemicals and pollutants. By opting for refilling, we minimize the demand for these harmful substances, leading to cleaner air, water, and soil.

Behaviour change and awareness

The act of refilling prompts individuals to consider their consumption patterns and become more conscious of their environmental impact. Engaging in refilling fosters a mindset shift towards a more sustainable lifestyle

Economic benefit*

The circular economy created through refilling opens avenues for new businesses and job opportunities. It encourages local economies to develop refill stations and support eco-friendly practices, leading to job creation and economic growth in sustainable sectors.

Resource conservation

Refilling helps conserve valuable resources by extending the lifespan of products and their containers. Rather than continually producing new items, refilling allows us to make the most out of the resources already in circulation, reducing the demand for raw materials, energy, and water required for manufacturing new products.

Energy an carbon footprint reduction

The process of manufacturing, packaging, and transporting new products requires substantial amounts of energy and contributes to greenhouse gas emissions. Refilling eliminates or significantly reduces these stages, leading to lower energy consumption and a reduced carbon footprint.

How I chose to approach the problem?

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Getting to know the users and empathizing with them

User Research and Insights

I conducted user interviews as a fantastic opportunity to gain insight on how users feel about a circular economy, reducing single-use packaging, and minimizing plastic waste. Throughout the course of the interview, here are some of the questions asked.

About 20% of weekly garbage accumulated is plastic waste.

More households are looking into reducing their plastic waste footprint.

1. How often do you find yourself purchasing products that come in single-use packaging?

2. What are your thoughts on the current state of plastic packaging waste and its impact on the environment?

3. Have you ever considered reusing plastic packaging instead of disposing of it? If so, what challenges have you encountered?

4. What is your opinion on refill stations as an alternative to repurchasing products?

5. Are there any barriers that prevent you from using them? 

6. How would you perceive a mobile app that promotes refilling packaging at specific locations? What features or benefits would you expect it to offer?

7. Can you think of any incentives or rewards that would encourage you to choose refilling options more regularly over repurchasing?

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Not many people understand that only a tiny percentage of all plastic is recycled, even if they practice proper disposal.

Consumers generally reuse their glass and plastic packaging if they are big enough and able to completely remove labels.

Consumers are willing to refill their products if its cheaper.

User Personas

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Defining the users' problem

As an environmentalist and an avid beach lover, I want to make a conscious effort to reduce my use of single-use plastics, refill instead of repurchase so that I can contribute to a circular economy for improved marine life but it's challenging because manufacturers insist on producing single-use plastic packaging and goods. 

Generating ideas

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Test

UI and feedback

Prototype and feedback

Prototype

UX/UI Designer

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