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DEVELOPMENT IN 

Every living organism interacts with each other. Unfortunately, because of the rapid evolution of man, nature is not ready to interact with us. We consider many animals to be pests. But are they so? Will humanity be able to understand why the so-called pests exist together with us? Can we make a plus out of the minus?

The problems of the state of Florida showed a negative answer to the above-mentioned questions. We believe that snails can clean up unnecessary things for us, and not destroy what we need. 

We change the imposed stereotypes and go from parasitism to symbiosis.

THE PROBLEM

Each Ukrainian annually generates about 330 kg of garbage. In a year, 11 million tons of domestic waste are transported to polygons and informal garbage dumps. The total area of ​​landfills is almost 5% of the country's territory, which is comparable to the size of the Chernivtsi region. At the same time in Ukraine there is only one incineration plant - the Kiev "Energia". Its capacity is not enough even for servicing the capital of Ukraine. For a year, 260-280 thousand tons are burned here, while in Kiev it is collected 1.2 million tons of household waste. As a result, 95% of household garbage throughout the country is exported outside the settlements and stored for decades. And while in Ukraine there are no waste processing plants, plastic carries a serious harm not only to the nature of our country, but also to human health in particular.

UKRAINE IN PLASTICS

Theoretically, garbage in Ukraine could be recycled, as it is done in civilized countries. For example, the Swedes process 99% of their own waste, Germans, Swiss and Austrians - 97%, Japanese - 90%. However, Ukraine still lacks industrial capacities for garbage processing. Today the most modern such complex is the Rovno waste-processing plant. Built in 2013, it meets the environmental standards set by the state. However, unfortunately, this is still an exception to the rule. 

RECYCLING OF GARBAGE:

In Ukraine, there are 6.5 thousand legal and about 35 thousand illegal dumps with a total area of ​​7% of the territory, and this can be equated to the area of ​​the whole Denmark (more than 43 thousand square kilometers). And every year the situation only worsens. The country, which is located on the most fertile land of the continent, sends 95% of solid waste to landfills.

According to environmentalists, Ukraine has accumulated 54 million cubic meters of waste; Every year landfills are replenished by approximately 15-17 million tons of domestic and commercial garbage. For recycling is only a tenth of the collected garbage.

For today in the country there are 4 incinerators: in Kiev, Dnepropetrovsk, Kharkov and occupied Sevastopol. But only the Kiev plant "Energia" works.

 

Garbage will not disappear anywhere, because it will decay for hundreds of years. And even if we start sorting and processing it, huge territories of fertile lands will be restored no sooner than in 300 years.

 

At the moment, our country needs a fundamentally new concept in processing of domestic and industrial garbage ...

2011, FLORIDA, USA

Giant African Land Snails (GALS) were brought to Florida (USA) in 2011 and became the most destructive invasive species in just a month. This snail is capable of eating almost any product that it can find, from plaster on homes to car tires. 

Originally from Cameroon (East Africa), the GALS, Achatina fulica, is one of the largest land snails in the world, growing up to eight inches in length. Each snail can live as long as nine years. GALS are difficult to eliminate because they reproduce rapidly, with adults laying up to 1,200 eggs per year.

In 2016, Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam announced that more than 164,000 giant African land snails (GALS) have been eliminated in Florida since the invasive snail was discovered in Miami-Dade County in 2011.

But is it really worthwhile to eliminate these animals?

For more than 6 years the Newpets Foundation has been working on the selection of pulmonary snails, exploring more than 15 species and 40 subspecies, focusing on the invasive Achatina fulica, while selecting the most capable of effective digestion of various polyethylene (HDPE, MDPE, LDPE), studying the actual composition and specific functional roles of the microbiome which is in extensive microbiotic array in their digestive tract and all this in order to subsequently make our country cleaner

THE SOLUTION

WHAT WE'RE DOING

Project Snails is a multi-year project aimed at reducing the amount of single-use plastic that pollutes the most fertile land of the continent, the lands of our Ukraine. We in Newpets are proud of our painstaking work in the field of selection of pulmonary snails and we believe that together we can get out of the ecological catastrophe.

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Oral apparatus: 25,000 chitinous teeth

Eggs: 4 000 000 per life cycle

Olfaction: smells up to 2 meters

Length: 35 centimeters

Weight: 2 kilograms

Lifespan: 11 years

CHARACTERISTIC

The birthplace of a giant African land snail, Achatina (Lissachatina) fulica Bowdich, 1822, is Ghana and Cameroon. In the south of the Sahara, this habitat made these snails extremely physiologically adaptable in terms of temperature tolerance, and also able to digest an incredibly broad range of food. Because of its highly proliferative nature, this mollusk has become one of the most invasive species. Achatina fulica have an extensive microbiological mass in the digestive tract. These symbiotic relationships help the snail achieve an extraordinary level of digestive efficiency (up to 80 percent). Functional analysis reveals a number of microbial genes that can help the host in the biodegradation of polyethylene of different density, plastics, waste paper, organic waste and even some metals, which we proved experimentally by selecting this model.

Although the actual composition and specific functional roles of the microbiome remain little studied, the striking efficacy of Achatina fulica in digesting lignocellulosic material during our studies suggests that this microbiome may have new enzymes that can be used in the biofuel industry.

So, in addition to the ecological processing of waste, snails can be used in the energy sector of our country, which makes it a potential fountain for scientific information and development of rational waste management methods, channeling the symbiosis of Achatina fulica and its microbiota into digestion of hardly decomposable waste and applying the model as biofuel of a new generation.

GET INVOLVED

Donate to help us change Ukraine, find out how you can become a member of our team and share our work with friends.

PROJECT SNAILS IS A MULTI-YEAR PROJECT AIMED AT REDUCING THE AMOUNT OF SINGLE-USE PLASTIC THAT IS POLLUTING UKRAINE.

PHOTO ON “THE PROBLEM” BY ROD AYDELOTTE.

USED MATERIALS BY WWW.FOCUS.UA, WWW.SLOVOIDILO.UA, WWW.24TV.UA

METAGENOMIC ANALYSIS OF ACHATINA FULICA CROP BY  ALEXANDER M. CARDOSO, JANAÍNA J. V. CAVALCANTE, MAURÍCIO E. CANTÃO, CLAUDIA E. THOMPSON, ROBERTO B. FLATSCHART, ARNALDO GLOGAUER, SANDRA M. N. SCAPIN, YOUSSEF B. SADE, PAULO J. M. S. I. BELTRÃO, ALEXANDRA L. GERBER, ORLANDO B. MARTINS, ELOI S. GARCIA, WANDERLEY DE SOUZA , ANA TEREZA R. VASCONCELOS 

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