Brazil: Reforming the garbage economy

Despite the passing of a waste policy in 2010 which ordered the closure of open dumps in Brazil, there are still 2,500 of them across the country. Mountains of trash and greenhouse gas emissions have continued to grow in Brazil.

However last year the largest garbage dump in Latin America was shut down just outside the capital, Brasilia, and replaced by a modern landfill and sorting facility. Nearly a thousand former garbage collectors, who previously lived on and from the dump, have been trained to work in the facilities.

The project, which aims to be a model for other Brazilian cities, is also working in collaboration with local universities and training prospective engineers in sustainable waste management to work towards making the industry more climate friendly on a larger scale. 

DW met some former garbage collectors to explore the progress being made and challenges ahead. 

A film by Bianca Kopsch



06:05 Minutes


Global Ideas

The television reports and documentaries of Deutsche Welle's 'Global Ideas' media project provide people all over the world with information on model projects which implement biodiversity and climate protection. The media project is funded by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety through the International Climate Initiative.