Encouraging higher levels of recycling by households through collaboration with a waste cooperative, using the KOLEKT waste app, and providing additional income to around 150 informal waste pickers.

June, 2022 January, 2023

Funders

  • Alliance to End Plastic Waste

Partners

  • Coopama
  • Cooper Ecológica

In the area of Rio de Janeiro where waste cooperatives Coopama and Cooper Ecológica operates, there is little to no municipal waste recycling facilities available to households.

Through the issuance of Plastic Credits funded by the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (Alliance), this pilot project involves close working between the waste cooperative and two residential condominiums with around 1800 households between them.

Householders are being encouraged and educated in good recycling practices and their recyclable waste is being collected by the cooperative, which employs around 150 informal waste pickers. As a result of the project the cooperative has been able to hire additional staff and lease additional vehicles.

The Project is delivered by BVRio Group company Circular Action.

Technology

The KOLEKT app is being used to register and monitor all collected materials for this project, as part of its field trials. KOLEKT uses images and GPS in order to verify the inputs of the cooperative.

KOLEKT creates traceability of waste along the whole supply chain and then maps all stakeholders involved in the process. It records data in a format that allows for more efficient monitoring, validation, verification and certification of waste recovery and recycling against recognised standards. Materials are registered in the app by weight, type and condition, and the date and place of collection is recorded along with photographs, so that actors in the whole collection and recycling chain can see the materials on offer, or requested, near them.

The cooperatives are providing feedback into the app’s functionality as part of this trial.

Expected Impact

Household Education Campaign

In order to increase the rate and type of materials being collected, residents are receiving additional help from the cooperative.

A new area has been set up in each building for residents to deliver their recyclable waste to, which includes plastic, glass, metal and paper. Informal information sessions, leaflets and posters in communal areas are all helping to show residents what to recycle and where to leave their waste.

“It is a pleasure to have the opportunity to receive support from BVRio and the Alliance. The project has helped us to expand collections, increase material and generate more opportunities and income for collectors. We have hired more people for the team, and so more people have benefited from the waste collected.

With additional funding we now have added three trucks carrying out the collections, two assistants and a driver per truck, supporting our cooperative. In addition to the collection and sorting work, we are carrying out environmental education campaigns in the condo to expand the collection of solid waste.”

Administrative Manager at Coopama, Luana Fernandes

Meet some of the team at Coopama

Multiple types of recyclable materials are collected and sorted

About the Alliance to End Plastic Waste  Alliance to End Plastic Waste Logo

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste (Alliance) is a global non-profit organisation with the mission to end plastic waste in the environment. Its focus is implementing projects and investing in innovative solutions to develop or enhance waste management systems. ­­­­As of June 2022, its portfolio comprises over 50 projects across 30 countries worldwide.  

Tackling plastic waste is a complex challenge that requires collective action. Since 2019, the Alliance has convened a global network of industry leaders across the plastics value chain, together with government, civil society, entrepreneurs, and communities to work towards advancing a circular economy for plastic waste. 

For more information, visit: www.endplasticwaste.org 

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