Waste Management and Sustainability Platform (UX/UI)



Product and identity design for Plasma, a plastic waste and sustainability management platform dedicated to supporting young Canadians in implementing practical and sustainable recycling habits into their active lifestyles.


Creative Director
and UX Designer


Adobe CS


3 month team project +
2 week solo refinement period



For the average Canadian, waste management is a perpetual puzzle. Lack of clarity and practice of proper waste disposal has created confusion on the standard of household waste sorting and recycling methods. Thus, municipal waste management has become costly and complicated, proper recycling of incorrectly sorted waste is labourious and challenging, leading to endlessly increasing landfills. On top of this, single-use plastics (SUPs) are incredibly common and favoured for their convenience.

“Canadians throw away over 3 million tonnes of plastic waste every year. Only 9% is recycled while the rest ends up in our landfills, waste-to-energy facilities or the environment.”

(Government of Canada, 2023)



How might we streamline waste segregation and disposal processes to encourage the future generations of Canadians to participate in circular plastic waste management?

with Users


To better understand users, I conducted user interviews to gain better insight into the real perspective of young Canadians (primarily university students) and their frustrations and challenges with their day-to-day waste management.


"I'd like to play my part in making a positive impact on the environment. But often waste sorting feels fussy and time-consuming."

( ༎ຶŎ༎ຶ )

“I feel guilty for prioritizing my convenience over the environment. It doesn’t feel right to go through so much single-use waste on a daily basis.”


"It doesn’t seem like my city cares about waste segregation. There’s no point in sorting waste if it gets all mixed together in the end. I want transparency on what happens to my waste after I dispose of it.”

"I want to recycle, but it's frustrating when guidelines are unclear and keep changing. I’m embarrassed to admit that I often end up throwing recyclables into the trash — but I know I’m not the only one."

A Deeper


Next, I created two user personas that represent our prospective users. I explored their desires, motivations, and potential pain points in their waste management journey.

Ava, the Hustler

"I want to do my part to reduce plastic waste. But as a working student, it must be a simple process that fits into my bustling lifestyle."

AGE: 21
OCCUPATION: University Student and Barista
LOCATION: Vancouver, Canada

Ava is an Environmental Science student and part-time barista at her local coffee shop. After witnessing the staggering amount of takeout waste and single-use plastics since post-COVID-19 operations, Ava was shocked by the sheer volume of coffee cups, plastic lids, straws, and other disposable items that ended up in the shop’s trash every day. This has sparked Ava to reflect on her own waste management habits and is now determined to educate herself and others about proper waste disposal, recycling, and sustainable practices.


  • Tech-savvy and open to using new technologies
  • Community oriented; active on social media
  • Values environmental consciousness and sustainability
  • Likes to maintain a packed schedule


  • Effectively reduce, sort, and dispose of day to day plastic waste
  • Lead by example and spread a positive, sustainable impact in her community


  • The coffee shop creates so much waste every day, recycling isn’t going where it should be
  • Since Covid I’ve noticed a surge in single-use plastics filling up our trash


  • I want to make an active effort, I also want to encourage people around me to participate
  • I never go anywhere without my phone. It’s convenient being able to manage my activities while on the go


  • As an Environmental Science student, I value sustainability. I’m willing to learn new ways to make environmentally conscious choices
  • I want to work with my community to make a difference

Mike, the Chefpreneur

“Every dish I create tells a story, and I want that story to be one about conscious choices and meaningful contributions to the community.”

AGE: 32
OCCUPATION: Chef and Restaurant Owner
LOCATION: Toronto, Canada

Mike is a seasoned chef and restaurant entrepreneur. Since opening his restaurant five years ago, Mike is committed to providing a top dining experience for his customers while still being conscious of the environmental impact of the restaurant industry. As a small business owner, Mike wants to play his part in reducing waste, improving recycling and waste management practices in his restaurant, and promoting sustainability among his staff and customers.


  • A “people person”
  • Passionate about culinary arts
  • Highly values his business’ prestige and community perception
  • Food and service come first, is open to solutions that give back his time to focus on his cuisine


  • Sharpen his restaurant’s waste management practices
  • Streamline and minimize time/effort on waste handling for himself and his employees


  • Organizing waste is time-consuming, I just want to focus on my food
  • I never anticipated all of the complex waste regulations. I’m only a small business, I can’t afford to be fined


  • I’m always open to ways I can save time and money
  • An efficient workflow is crucial in the fast-paced restaurant environment
  • I want to feel confident that my business complies with environmental/waste regulations and laws


  • As a small business owner and visible member of the community, I feel a responsibility to do my part in reducing environmental impact
  • The reputation of my business is everything to me. I know customers are becoming increasingly concerned about sustainable business practices

Identifying Opportunities


After creating user personas, I explored the current user journey for an individual’s waste management, identifying any obstacles, challenges and opportunities for improvement.


  1. Waste management is timely and confusing to average Canadians who may not understand complicated waste sorting protocols

  2. Poor communication and lack of transparency about proper waste disposal result in incorrect recycling practices and procedures

  3. Inconvenient recycling disposal locations, pickup schedules, and uncertainty about where to dispose of certain items create a cumbersome waste disposal process

  4. Without clear knowledge and incentives, people are less motivated to participate in proper waste management practices, especially when they do not see the result of their efforts

For the average consumer with a busy lifestyle, waste management must be simple, convenient, and rewarding to be effective.



Plasma strives to create a new direction on the sustainability of single-use plastics (SUPs) by creating a line of connection between active Gen Z and Millenial consumers (particularly college students and young professionals) and local waste management systems.


Partner with local groceries & waste collection centres to incentivize users to sort & recycle their waste


Connect users with convenient and accessible means of waste collection and disposal


Educate on lasting methods of proper waste disposal and simple lifestyle changes to reduce carbon footprint

Through these initiatives, Plasma strives to pilot the next generation of eco-conscious Canadians to be leaders in circular plastic waste management.


Through its mobile platform, Plasma will be providing users with convenient, practical, and effective means of household waste management by incentivizing proper waste disposal through a simple points reward system. Plasma’s technology aims to cut back confusion on waste management and streamline household waste disposal and recycling.


  1. Connect users to participating groceries or waste collection centres to earn ‘points’, which can be redeemed for rewards, discounts, or cash back.

  2. Allow users to schedule waste pickups from their homes with simplified guidance on waste segregation.

  3. Stimulate sustainable user habits to reduce waste consumption and encourage a circular lifestyle that is feasible within young people’s active lifestyles.

the Flow


Here I outlined the desired features of the mobile app using an information architecture outline. This allowed me to have oversight of the user flow and ensure that it would be a seamless user experience.

Building the


At this stage, I created many iterations of what the app interface would look like. This allowed me to plan, revise, and get feedback on how to best lay out the essential steps and elements the user would interact with to reach their goal.


    View your recent activity, start a new task, locate centres near you, or learn something new

    Start a new waste disposal by choosing a drop off location or scheduling a time for pick up

    View, earn, and manage rewards


Feedback &

Upon careful consideration and review of user feedback on the low fidelity wireframes, I decided to incorporate the following changes as I progressed onto high fidelity:

  1. Add QR Code scan to the navigation bar for easy access
  2. Change “Rewards” icon in the navigation bar (looks too similar to scan icon)
  3. Better (consistent) use of buttons for simplicity and ease of use


Creating the


Plasma’s brand concept was designed to be fluid, natural, and circular. The logo is meant to allude to the natural flow of water molecules — an essential element of life and sustainability. It serves as a motif of exchange — between conventional and novel, unsustainable and sustainable, unviable and viable. The three branches of the logomark represent the fundamental values of connection, motivation, and education.

Targeting a younger audience, it was important that Plasma’s identity was confident yet playful, bold yet approachable. This was to ensure that Plasma’s visual communication was perceived as lively and appealing while establishing a compelling brand message.

Brand/Social Messaging:

The Final


The Plasma app has been designed to make waste sorting simple and accessible. With an intuitive user interface and a range of features like activity tracking, scheduled waste disposals, redeemable rewards, and real-time feedback on your waste reduction progress, Plasma is the tool to simplify waste management and do a part in making a positive impact on the environment. Below are some of the key features of the app that can help users manage their waste more efficiently.

View the PROTOTYPE︎︎︎

Welcome to Plasma!

Continue with an existing log in or create a new account.

You’re in!

Welcome to your Dashboard. Here you will be able to view and manage your recent activity.

Waiting for a waste pick up? Want to view the status of your latest waste drop off? Anticipating new rewards? Find the latest updates here.

Find access to tools like locating your nearest collection centre and resources on how to sort your waste.

Or explore other parts of the app through the navigation bar.

Manage your waste disposals.

Either choose a drop off location near you or schedule a pick up at a convenient time.

Each new task will allow the user to earn points that can later be redeemed for rewards.

Manage your rewards.

Over time users will collect points through their completed tasks (i.e. waste disposals, activity progress, etc). Each task rewards a varying number of points.

Once a user collects enough points, they will be able to view their redeemable rewards, including store discounts and cashback.

Scan QR code.

This is how users will earn and redeem their points.

Pull the code up from the navigation bar for easy access.
Manage your account.