RECYCLEBALLS: An innovative, eco-friendly way of recycling tennis balls

An US-based company, RECYCLEBALLS, is striving to bring about eco-friendly changes in the game of tennis.

RECYCLEBALLS
RECYCLEBALLS company logo

Lawn Tennis is a much-loved game all across the globe. People play it for a multitude of reasons, ranging from personal pleasure to professional glory. While this beloved game is continued to be enjoyed, attempts are being made to make the sport more eco-friendly and sustainable.

RECYCLEBALLS by Wilson aims to fix this problem, by providing an environmentally friendly solution that aims to make sure that the tennis balls can be recycled so as to reuse the old tennis balls in a better way.

What is RECYCLEBALLS?

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RECYCLEBALLS bin

RECYCLEBALLS is an American company that is attempting to recycle the tennis balls that are generated as waste.

In the United States of America alone, 125 million tennis balls end up being dumped in landfills every year. That amounts-up to 20,000 metric tonnes of methane-producing, near non-decomposable rubber waste. Each of these balls requires approximate 400 years to decompose.

While one could advocate the longer usage of each tennis ball, instead of carelessly discarding it. However, there are many tennis players, including professionals, who prefer the lovely bounce of a brand new ball over that of a slightly worn-out one. The difference is also seemingly substantial.

This is where RECYCLEBALLS aims to bridge the gap. By their innovative set of methods, they want to increase the reuse and recycling of these discarded tennis balls.

RECYCLEBALLS: Steps involved

The very first step involves developing a vast network of the RECYCLEBALLS initiative. Next, their ‘convenient bins’ are placed near tennis courts. These bins come with prepaid US shipping labels, which make it easy for them to be shipped to Vermont.

Next, some of the tennis balls are ground up, and the felt is separated from the rubber. The rubber crumb thus generated is known as ‘GREEN GOLD’. The remaining balls are sold and reused as dog balls. The GREEN GOLD is used in the construction of tennis courts and horse footing. Further research and development are underway to produce more recycled products out of it.

Nearly 2 years of R&D has been dedicated to developing a nearly 99% cost-effective way of separating the felt from the rubber crumbs in the tennis balls. The company is headquartered in Vermont, USA.

Also read: ‘Back in the day, tennis was more magical and tactical as compared to today,’ feels Rafael Nadal