Itaipu presents at COP work with recovery of solid waste in its territory

  • ESG

The employee of Itaipu’s Coordination Department, Fabiana Stamm, presented on the morning of Wednesday (6), in Dubai, the work with solid waste carried out by the company in its territory. Currently, 55 municipalities in Western Paraná have 68 Recyclable Recovery Units (UVRs) implemented with part of the funding from Binacional and technical and economic advice provided by the Itaipu Technological Park (PTI).

The panel, with the theme “International Recycling Alliance: the global agreement to reduce plastic pollution and the role of recycled material collectors in the circular economy”, was mediated by Adalberto Maluf, national secretary of Urban Environment and Environmental Quality, and also included the participation of Aline Sousa, director of the Central de Cooperatives of Recyclable Materials of DF and Surroundings (Centcoop-DF) and member of the National Movement of Recyclable Material Collectors (MNCR); by Severino Junior, from the International Alliance of Collectors; and São Paulo state deputy, Marina Helou.

Fabiana Stamm presented the history of the company’s work on this topic over the last two decades since the first association of recyclers in the Western region of Paraná was created, in 2003. Today there are already 65 formalized groups, with 1,092 direct jobs and around 2.4 thousand tons of material recycled monthly in the company’s territory of influence. The installed UVRs have operating machinery, such as a collection truck, conveyors, and forklifts, as well as infrastructure suitable for the well-being of workers, with changing rooms and a cafeteria.

Itaipu’s support, in partnership with city halls, has also helped the groups to formalize cooperatives, generating employment and increasing the average income of collectors, which in the region is approximately R$1,700 per month. Furthermore, working with PTI helps catalog waste and create collected material databases. These numbers gave rise to the “recyclometer”, a tool that guides the creation of public policies by the state in reverse logistics, responsibility for waste, and economic decision-making for cooperatives.

“It is a work done by many hands. Itaipu coordinates the implementation, pays up to 80% of the value of the structures, and through the PTI provides training and technical assistance. Still, it is a partnership with the municipalities and waste picker associations”, highlighted Stamm.

For Aline Sousa, former collector, daughter, and granddaughter of collectors, the hydroelectric plant’s performance is an example for the country, mainly due to the dignity and recognition of the importance of workers in the process. “Itaipu has a historical involvement with collectors, the projects coordinated by it are our vision of the future. Our goal is to one day be able to replicate the remuneration of collectors in the region in which it operates in all associations,” she said.

In Adalberto Maluf’s opinion, the issue of solid waste is quite complicated and requires many forces working together to advance in Brazil. He praised Binacional’s stance in taking on the responsibility of coordinating work in its area of activity. “Itaipu took this agenda for itself, expanded it to its area of coverage, and created the most successful program in the country with collectors”, he highlighted.

For the head of the Itaipu office in Brasília, Ligia Soares, it is important that Binacional can take its experience to events such as COP, serving as an example for more partnerships in this model to happen, helping to solve environmental problems in which the company already operates efficiently. “This Wednesday’s panel was great because it managed to bring together the Federal Government, Legislative, and representatives of civil entities to discuss an essential topic that is the responsibility of the entire society,” she said. According to her, this was possible because the Brazil Pavilion at COP brought together civil society and government in the same space, allowing different actors to dialogue, following federal government guidelines.