Eco Conquista, an IMCD Cares initiative, will impact 25,000 residents of Diadema in São Paulo, Brazil

According to a scientific paper published in 20171, recycling is considered a great source of energy savings and promoter of CO2 recovery. In addition, it generates jobs and changes markets around the world. There is a group of people integral to driving the success of a community’s recycling program. Brazil's National Solid Waste Policy (PNRS) recognizes sanitation workers as the main social agent in the recycling process responsible for placing Brazil among the top ten paper recycling countries in the world. Far beyond recycling, sanitation workers are transformers of our environment.

 

IMCD Brasil operates a distribution warehouse and technical application laboratories in the city of Diadema in Greater São Paulo, Brazil. The city has a low-performing recycling program due to aged equipment, limited resources and lack of recycling education within the community. While IMCD Brasil has had a corporate reputation for charitable giving towards local environmental and social causes to support its Diadema neighbors, employees were inspired to do even more for the community after learning of the city’s dire needs.

 

Seeking to create an opportunity to improve the working conditions of Diadema’s cooperative of independent sanitation workers and their dated recycling resources, IMCD Brasil employees applied for a grant from the global IMCD Cares Fund. The IMCD Brasil employees’ passion for helping the community resulted in an IMCD Cares grant that propelled the launch of Eco Conquista.  

Eco Conquista, an IMCD Cares initiative, was launched December 2021 as a new social and environmental initiative to help improve community-wide recycling efforts in Diadema. In alignment with Associação Nova Conquista and the Council of Diadema, IMCD Brasil committed to the betterment of the Diadema community of 25,000 residents by investing in new equipment for the recycling center to improve the working conditions of the independent sanitation workers called Cooperativa Nova Conquista. The Eco Conquista donations from IMCD Brasil are anticipated to increase productivity from 100 tons to 200 tons of recycled material. Additionally, the Eco Conquista initiative also will include the planting of 136 trees in the community and 40 environmental educational actions for neighboring schools and the community. 

Through the Eco Conquista initiative, IMCD Brasil’s major beneficiary are the Cooperativa Nova Conquista sanitation workers stationed at the recycling center. Several major equipment upgrades were donated to the Cooperative including a glass shredding machine. Prior to the machine donation, the work was done manually, posing a high risk of injury to workers.


“[These donations] will make a difference for us at production. [Before,] we had to crush the glass by hand,” said Benedita Farias, Community Leader, Cooperativa Nova Conquista. “Besides being dangerous, the [manual] process was time consuming. We are immensely grateful to IMCD Brasil for trusting us and training us so that we can improve our working conditions and productivity.” 

“A project like this one has tremendous importance, especially for a city like Diadema,” said Patty Ferreira, Diadema Vice Mayor.

The launch of Eco Conquista reinforces IMCD Brasil’s long-term commitment to create an inclusive and productive work condition for the sanitation workers; enhancing the city’s recycling program and improving Diadema residents’ quality of life.

 

“A project like this one […] will bring a more sustainable city with recycled materials going to the right place,” said Patty Ferreira, Diadema Vice Mayor. “This has tremendous importance, especially for a city like Diadema.”

 

1Recycling in Brasil: Paper and Plastic Supply Chain Jacqueline Elizabeth Rutkowski and Emília Wanda Rutkowski (2017), publicado no MDPI - Um pioneiro na publicação acadêmica de acesso aberto, o tem apoiado comunidades acadêmicas desde 1996. Com sede em Basel, Suíça, o MDPI tem a missão de promover o intercâmbio científico aberto em todas as formas, em todas as disciplinas.