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Waste treatment and recycling in Mozambique with LOVE

Waste treatment and recycling in Mozambique with LOVE

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In Mozambique, it was announced a few days ago that the country will export 600 tons of recyclable waste annually for treatment by partner companies in Africa and Asia, as part of the Mozambique recovery mechanism.

According to Mozambican legislation, the responsibility for waste management lies with the local authorities, but Rural Environment Observatory It says so in Mozambique “Provision of solid waste management services is generally limited to formal urban areas. About 70% of the urban population lives in informal settlements where solid waste management is poor,” and it is estimated that “municipal authorities facilitate the collection of 61% of the waste generated”.

The result of this situation is dumps in which waste decomposes in the open, or burning of waste near homes, with negative effects on air pollution and public health, by forming a ground for the spread of epidemics.

Last year, the city of Beira set up waste treatment centers in order to encourage sustainable development of the areas where victims of Cyclone Idai that swept the region in 2019. The garbage is collected, processed and transformed locally or then exported for use in industry.

The Mozambican Recycling Association (AMOR), an environmental organization created in 2009, and present in Maputo, Vilanculos, Beira and also in Pemba, has participated in the process. In an interview with RFI, Alfredo Zonguzi, Project Manager at AMOR in the city of Beira, spoke about the activity of this association and its impact on the environmental and social levels.

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“AMOR trains waste pickers organized into associations. In Maputo there is an association of waste associations formed by AMOR and receive assistance, this also happens in Vilanculos, and in Beira this assistance is also given”, explains the project manager who estimates the number of people associated with the association involved in garbage collection at 1,500.

“People have benefited something through this activity. It is estimated that the collectors, on average, earn a monthly income of 3000 Meticais (€40). Through this activity of collecting waste in different areas, they are able to earn the income of their families and maintain it”, Alfredo Zogonzi refers to when referring to the social impact of this activity “It has been a positive thing because people have gained more environmental awareness, realizing that their actions towards the environment have consequences, in this case on their lives.”

By invoking the context in which his country lives in terms of waste management, the environmental activist considers that “In general, the situation is still difficult. However, since the advent of AMOR, many local actors have started to enter this sector of waste management, either in the recycling component or in the environmental education component. It is mainly observed in major cities, with education It is a work that AMOR has been developing for more than ten years. Other actors have emerged during this period and we can say that it was a win-win because many have already embraced the cause.”Alfredo Zonguzi concludes.