ISWA National Member for Mexico DS Latinoamericana hosts conference and ISWA board

Jun 16, 2022 | ISWA blog, ISWA news

The ISWA board met in Guadalajara in support of the work being done by the Mexican national member to promote the use and further development of intermunicipal associations as a tool to improve practices and infrastructure for proper and sustainable solid waste management. 

ISWA’s President Carlos RV Silva Filho led a delegation and spoke at the opening of the International Symposium on Integrated Waste Management in Guadalajara, Mexico. He reminded us that proper waste management is a basic human right, and an essential component in meeting the current challenges of global warming and environmental breakdown.  

The conference further focused on the importance of supporting the development of intermunicipal associations, how these have already achieved some good results, and of course the fact that much more still needs to be done. Francisco Galvan, national member representative for Mexico, took the opportunity to thank Rafael Apraiz, national member for Spain, for his role in sharing the European experience in developing intermunicipal associations which was instrumental to the development of the same concept within the Mexican context. 

 

Further a session on the challenges of introducing circular economy concepts and the development of appropriate infrastructure for this focused on the basic requirements which include citizens accepting their role and responsibility in achieving this, and that some sort of disposal fee must be introduced and accepted. The session included the input from Marcelo Rosso, Board Member and Regional Chapter Representative for Latin America. During the session we learnt that according to a recent report, the investment necessary to develop the basic waste management infrastructure needed in Latin America amounted to 5% of GDP, while average investment now lags at 3%. This emphasized the need to facilitate investment through policies and tools like intermunicipal associations. 

Finally, the first book in the ISWA-Wiley series on Waste Management, “Industry 4.0 and Circular Economy: Towards a wasteless future or a wasteful planet?”, was presented by Atilio Savino, national member representative of Argentina. This was then followed by a presentation from one of the book’s author, Antonis Mavropoulos, former ISWA president. 

In another highlight of the visit, the local government representatives of the state of Jalisco hosted a meeting between the ISWA delegation and a delegation of local mayors and intermunicipal association leaders to mark the introduction of a new law to facilitate such associations. This echoed the conference message that a legal basis for intermunicipal cooperation is essential to provide the necessary assurances for investments in infrastructure and advanced waste management practices. 

Taking the opportunity to have a look at the current practices, landfill working group chair James Law and ISWA managing director visited the Picachos Landfill in Zapopan Mexico. While there is a lot of work to be done, the operation has already made great strides in improving the site and in particular worker safety. In this case, as in all others, ISWA is committed to helping members improve practices and technologies through the knowledge sharing and dissemination that is the lifeblood of the association.  

The ISWA board and all members of the ISWA delegation would like to thank Francisco Galvan and his team from DS Latinoamericana for a successful visit and the great hospitality during their stay. This first post pandemic trip served to strengthen the bonds within the association and promote international engagement in the region that will allow for better collaboration with local entities and work towards ISWA’s mission to promote professional and sustainable waste management worldwide and the much needed transition to a circular economy.  

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