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“We know (waste) incineration and power generation through incineration are considered a magical solution. (...) But that’s not the truth. The truth is that it is a very poor way of managing waste and also very inefficient in terms of energy. It is the most expensive way to do both things”, said the Latin American coordinator of the Global Anti-Incinerator Alliance (GAIA), Eduardo Giesen, in an interview with Televisión Nacional of Uruguay.
The Chilean engineer was in Montevideo, Uruguay’s capital, to participate on October 18 in the seminar titled "Urban solid waste management: a critical look at alternatives", where national and foreign participants analyzed the social movements’ initiatives, in addition to a proposal by the government to incinerate waste.
The organizers of the activity were RAPAL Uruguay, the workers central PIT-CNT, REDES-Friends of the Earth Uruguay, the Union of Urban Solid Waste Classifiers (UCRUS), GAIA and the International Labour Foundation for Sustainable Development (Sustain Labour).
The show La Noticia y su Contexto broadcasted on the Uruguayan state channel, took the opportunity to interview Giesen. There, the Chilean activist talked about GAIA and its work, he rejected waste incineration and landfills and stated that the incineration industry is carrying out a strong lobby in Latin America because it is "weakening in the North". The engineer also said that sustainable alternatives require political will and demanded a waste management model that includes classifiers. Giesen also highlighted a “zero waste” system, with waste reduction “at source”, separation, recycling and composting.
A two-and-a-half year process of work which resulted in a meeting with several thousand Brazilian peasants; “a process that didn´t start now, and that won´t end here”, said Itelvina Massioli, national leader of the peoples´ struggle for land, agrarian reform and food sovereignty, in interview with Real World Radio after the 6th Congress of the Landless Rural Workers Movement (MST).
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