Waste Management in Paraguay

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Waste Management in Paraguay Within the capital of Asuncion, Paraguay lays the countries largest waste disposal site called Cateura. The metropolitan area of Asuncion has rapidly grown in urban population and development over the past 40 years, but not in a well-planned manner. As such, this has created environmentally sensitive areas associated with negative impacts such as inadequate storm water drainage systems, and solid waste collection and disposal. This affects the water supply and sanitation infrastructure and services, as well as the livelihood of its inhabitants. This background paper will analyze the environmental risks of waste disposal in Asuncion, Paraguay and how that affects the land as well as the people. An overview…show more content…
Used needles, feces, bacteria, chemicals, and toxins are all found within the garbage that these residents not only sift through daily but also live atop of. Perhaps worst of all is when the hospital dumps their trash on the side of the road in Cateura, leaving behind body parts. Requests have been made for hospitals to not do this and have been denied. Often times the parts are eaten by pigs and chickens and dogs carry the limbs around (Children, 2008)). This brings concerns for parents who have children exposed to these images. Health risks such as increased rates of genetic mutations, birth defects, certain cancers, and malaria are connected to living close to landfills (Landfill, n.d.). In general and at minimum, most residents are susceptible to headaches or nausea because of the odor. Analyzing the social structure of the residents will create an understanding of their social well-being and what efforts they are making to improve their lifestyles. These workers are nicknamed gancheros, which refers to the hooks, or “ganchos,” they use. The gancheros and their children live in slums called bañados, which occupy the swamps between Asuncion and the River Paraguay. About 1,000 gancheros live and work in the area of the landfill (Landfill Harmonic, 2011). Paraguay ranks number seven on the list of income inequalities of countries, where the average income is on average $5.50 a day. Asuncions have mixed feelings about the status of
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