While working as a Petroleum Engineer back in my home country in Ecuador, I became disappointed with
my job when I witnessed the high environmental impact that it caused. Because of this disappointment I
decided to quit my job and instead focus my efforts in activities that protect the environment. Since I was
already familiar with the petrochemical industry, plastic recycling was a great alternative to develop as a
way to reduce the damages of that industry. This brought me to Japan with its increasingly positive attitude
towards environmental conservation and technology, and I chose to join Graduate School of Environmental
Studies at Tohoku University as the curriculum was up to my expectations.
My current research focuses on a process for recycling PVC plastic waste such as medical tubes and bags
made from flexible PVC. The process involves the use of steam in a mechano-chemical thermal process to
separate the components of the flexible PVC plastic mixture so that these components can be used again.
Other research themes include the removal of halogens from plastics, such as the removal of chlorine from
PVC or bromine from flame retardants contained in high-impact polystyrene plastic mixtures.
In the future, I would like to be in a position such as a university teacher or environmental councilor
from which I could impart a positive influence about the environment to many people. Environmental
problems are originated from various factors; not only industrial and technological factors, but also social
and even spiritual limitations. Therefore, I believe that education and personal formation are part of the
solution and I would like to contribute towards both aspects. I would like to become a person who can lead
and educate about environmentally sustainable development seen from various points of view.
The most difficult times are those when we cannot find the motivation to pursue our goals and dreams.
However, the motivation we need is always hidden somewhere within ourselves. The development of
Environmental Studies is of the greatest importance to humanity, and keeping this in mind will always
provide us with the motivation we need to succeed in our studies.