In a city full of beautiful distractions—nature, people, music—it is often easy to forget what is going on beneath your feet. However, for officially more than a quarter of the population in Rio de Janeiro, but likely much more, what is happening, or more appropriately, not happening, is difficult to ignore. According to the Ministry of Cities, 30% of the population in Rio de Janeiro is not connected to a formal sanitation system, and even in areas with formal connections, only about half of sewage waste is treated before entering into waterways and eventually the ocean.
These figures are a best case scenario, More >
Vila Laboriaux, with its dramatic view of beach on one side, lagoon on the other, is situated at the peak of Rocinha, Rio’s largest single favela. The community, between tranquil forest and the hustle and bustle of the Estrada da Gávea, is joining an increasing number of communities using self-help planning to tackle issues on their own terms. On Sunday August 4th, around 100 residents gathered on the local football pitch to begin drafting a document to outline both the potentials and challenges of their community. Residents of this neighborhood have been fighting the threat of evictions since a handful of neighbors suffered a landslide More >
According to MonitorAr-Rio’s data, of nine such stations in the network, the West Zone neighborhood of Bangu’s air quality monitoring station showed the worst performance in the second half of 2012. On December 25th, the worst day in that period, the air quality in Bangu was 213 points – which classifies it as “bad” on a scale of five possible classifications: good, regular, inadequate, bad, and awful. In the port area on that same day, the measure was 47 points, a “good” classification.
Climbing one of the many slopes of Morro da Pedreira in Costa Barros in Rio de Janeiro’s North Zone, you might not guess you’d find a father up here with a great talent for folk art and a passion for recycling and the environment. The material this man has chosen for his beautiful work is glass.
Often carelessly thrown away, glass becomes one of the villains in this season’s all-too-common flooding. Glass takes hundreds of years to biodegrade, which is why it is commonly recycled, or at least should be.
The artist Alex Sandro, or “Cabeludo” as he’s known in the community More >
The exhibition O Design da Favela (Favela Design) at the Centro Carioca de Design (Carioca Design Center) is currently showing 125 pieces by artists, artisans and inventors from 15 communities in Rio de Janeiro, with a few pieces of unknown origin. In this project, the favela is not associated with misery or scarcity, but is a place of abundance: abundant imagination, invention, study and practice.
Irmã Fátima and the children of Tabajaras have learned to see disposable materials in different ways. Together they transform plastic bottles into toys. “This one looks like a fish,” says one of her students. “It’s magnificent the way children look More >