Solid Waste Management and the Practice Open Dumping in Brazil: Lessons Learnt from the State of Santa Catarina

Marina Demaria Venâncio, Kamila Pope

Abstract


In the context of several complex global issues that challenge modern societies, the large-scale generation of solid waste and its inadequate disposal are rather intricate problems that threaten not only human livelihoods but also the life on the planet. More specifically, the practice of open dumping, which concerns to the illegal use of irregular sites for waste disposal, characterized by the absence of adequate environmental and health standards, is considered a global health an environmental emergency, demanding urgent action from Governments and individuals. Given that, this paper aims at providing a brief overview of the solid waste management scenario in Brazil, giving emphasis to the issue of open dumping and the challenges in tackling this problem. More specifically, it seeks to analyze the case of the State of Santa Catarina as a success story of deactivation of irregular dumpsites. The paper is therefore divided into three main sections. The first contextualizes the issue of solid waste and open dumping in Brazil. The second, explores the Brazilian framework for solid waste management, especially the National Policy for Solid Waste. Finally, the third discusses the successful case of Santa Catarina. All in all, it was possible to conclude that the Brazilian legislation on waste management is very progressive and address the issue with a systemic approach, which is one of the essential elements to achieve a sound waste management. Reforming the Brazilian infrastructure to better manage the waste produced, closing all open dumpsites and building proper landfills, are other crucial elements in transforming the country’s system, being the case of Santa Catarina an empirical proof of the fundamentality of the adoption of a systemic approach.

Keywords


waste management; open dumping; Brazilian National Policy for Basic Sanitatio; Santa Catarina.

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