Latin America

Latin America’s green initiatives amid pandemic rise in plastic use

Studies suggest Latin America could be heading for an "environmental tragedy" linked to increased plastic production. Countries are working to counteract this, with mixed results

plastic plastics Landfill for waste disposal next to Mexico City. Photo: Leo de la Garza/Shutterstock
Landfill for waste disposal next to Mexico City. Photo: Leo de la Garza/Shutterstock

As the Covid pandemic took hold in 2020, Latin Americans scrambled for solutions. Quarantine and social distancing measures were undermined by vast national gig economies, with many forced to continue working despite severe risks of contagion. Once economic woes set in, this informal labor sector grew even larger, with a very clear increase in self-employed delivery drivers. The lack of labor protections for these workers posed immediate problems, but a 66-percent increase in food deliveries has led to other knock-on effects, namely a worrying rise in the use of single-use plastic packaging.

In Brazil, Latin America’s biggest nation, WWF data...

Less expensive than a coffee

Enjoy any plan of your choice for US$1 for the first month