Since the summer of 2019, there is also a Brazilian offshoot of oeoo in Rio. Laura’s team is carrying out cleanups of the surrounding beaches and bays, launching educational projects against plastic waste and working with local fishermen to clean Guanabara Bay and the Atlantic coast off Rio.
Since the summer of 2019, there is also a Brazilian offshoot of oeoo in Rio.
The team led by Laura carries out numerous cleanups of the surrounding beaches and bays and launches the first educational projects against plastic waste for children and adolescents.
In close cooperation with two local fishing communities, as soon as the Corona pandemic allows it again, the heavily plastic-polluted Guanabara Bay and the Atlantic coast off Rio will be cleaned. Specially adapted fishing nets are used.
In the spring of 2020, oeoo was officially recognized as an independent NGO in Brazil, which makes it much easier to work there.
But as you know, Corona is also a big issue in Brazil, which is why the first major cleaning operation of Guanabara Bay before Rio is still being planned together with the local fishing cooperatives, but implementation can only start as soon as corona-related is possible again.
As a South American megacity, Rio de Janeiro has to deal with enormous waste problems, environmental protection we still write there quite small. Especially the waters off the metropolis of Rio de Janeiro are extremely polluted – a large part of it is plastic waste.
A hot spot for many years has been the large Guanabara Bay, which is polluted by heavy industry sewage, faeces, garbage and chemicals. A study by the Heinrich Böll Foundation in 2014 already spoke of around 18,000 litres of waste water per second flowing into the bay. Scientists at Brazilian research institutes see pollution as a threat to humans and nature and consider the level of diseases transmitted when in contact with the waters of Guanabara Bay to be dangerously high.
In cooperation with two local fishing communities, oeoo Brazil wants to clean the bay with adapted fishing nets. In a first attention-grabbing cleaning project, up to 40 tons of plastic waste will be removed from the bay with the help of local fishing communities and recycled by our recycling partner TOMRA Sorting.
Together with the local NGO Futurobom and the Colibri Collective, oeoo Brasil will launch a multi-year environmental education project for children of the public Vidigal school in the favelas (poor districts) of Rio. The prefeito Djalma Maranhao school is located above the beaches of Leblon and Vidigal. Two classes with a total of about 80 children aged 9-10 years are taught about plastic waste and environmental protection. The aim is to raise children’s awareness of the pollution of the sea by plastic. Indirectly, their families, the entire school and the municipality of Vidigal will also benefit. As part of the project, there will also be joint cleanups with the children on the local beaches in Rio.
FuturoBom has been providing Vidigal students with access to education and sport for years. The Colibri collective offers training in the areas of environmental protection and sustainable consumption. The joint project is currently being prepared by Caroline and Laura from oeoo Brasil and is scheduled to start in early summer.
Corona-related, the project is currently unfortunately dormant.
Laura (39) is a translator for German and has been running our branch One Earth – One Ocean Brasil since summer 2019.
She met oeoo through an interpreting assignment in Rio. Günther just founded the branch of oeoo for cleaning projects in Brazil. Because in Rio, many tons of plastic waste end up in the sea every day (especially in Guanabara Bay, on beaches and rivers). Laura was convinced that long-term cleaning and reconnaissance work was urgently needed in Brazil and joined oeoo. She is a founding member of oeoo in Rio and has conducted several cleanups with her team. A lot can be achieved with small steps.
Laura’s remit at oeoo is the coordination of the oeoo office in Rio. Together with her team, she plans cleanups together with experienced fishermen, organizes environmental protection lectures for children and adults and builds cooperations for research and cooperation with local companies and experts.
Caroline, 37, a frenchwoman, has lived in Rio since 2014 and is exploring Guanabara Bay.
She has decided to join oeoo as scientific director because she has fallen in love with the city of Rio and its region.When she sees Guanabara Bay in the city, she sees an amazing ecosystem, beautiful beaches, and she would love it if it were restored. In the northern zone, children are still swimming in it, although it is heavily polluted by sewage, waste, gasoline and plastic waste (mostly household waste). Local fishermen sometimes fish more plastic than fish.
The mangrove forest, which had previously covered most of the coastline, was reduced. Caroline believes that the fish, dolphins and whales will return to a clean bay, of which there are now only a few specimens. The health of children and their families in the Northern Zone could be improved, economic and tourist opportunities could be created in the region (fishing, beach activities, diving, sailing…). The bay is still alive and Caroline hopes that one day her children will swim safely in it again. Since oeoo was rebooted in Rio 2019, she is currently a bit of a girl for everything, although she focuses on exploring Guanabara Bay, focusing on the type, quantity and sources of plastic pollution, and building a network of contacts with universities and other NGOs operating in Rio.
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