Zero Waste / Circular Economy

Mozambiques waste management is not very organized. Therefore one can see plastic bags and much other trash on the streets. In upscale neighborhoods the municipality supplies trash containers, but in the rural part of Catembe there’s no garbage collection. Therefore waste hast to be reduced, e.g. plastic bags need to be refused, items have to be reused, repurposed or finally recycled and we simply need to try to go zero waste.

On the property we use tetra paks as plant containers for our trees in the nursery. Glas jars help to protect planting materials, seeds, teas and spices against insects. We make fire with paper and cardboard. Empty glas bottles decorate and embellish the paths and the tree bark of our building logs marks the way and helps us to keep off the sand a bit. Plastic wrappings are used over and over and if we have rests we bring them to plastic recycling facilities in the city. We collect washed up sea shells at the beach and utilize them for decoration or grinded as calcium fertilizer for the planting beds.

All food scraps and other organic waste is composted. The dry fecies from our compost toilet are being transformed within roughly 6 months into “terra preta” which is used to fertilize non edible plants such as our trees. Urine is left to process naturally and after 30 days becomes nitrogen rich fertilizer for our beds, we apply a mix of water with urine 15 days before planting anything. Ashes from cooking with coal and coal dust is used when we plant new trees or seedlings. Many plant residues are being used either as fertilizer or natural pesticide such as neem leave water or castor seeds.

Our mattresses are made from old sisal sacks and stuffed with coconut husk called coconut straw. Left over building materials and wood rests are used to manufacture furniture and worn out paletts serve as comfy loungers.

On the following pages of befriended organizations you can find more information about waste, recycling and zero waste in and around Maputo:

AMOR – Associação Moçambicana de Reciclagem / Mozambican Recycling Association