Ciudad Saludable

Ciudad Saludable (Healthy City), headquartered in Peru, is improving the living conditions, income and health of millions of poor people in Peru and Latin America―and increasingly also beyond Latin America―by creating efficient solid waste management systems and sustainable microenterprises that improve the livelihoods of waste pickers. Ciudad Saludable has a systemic approach that includes all stakeholders.

Fifteen million waste pickers worldwide are living absolutely at the bottom of society. They are not only poor, they are also socially marginalized because their work is deemed undignified. Waste pickers live near the waste dumps with their families in horribly unhealthy, unsanitary, and degrading circumstances.

Municipal solid waste management―the process of collecting, treating and disposing of solid wastes generated by all urban population groups in an environmentally and socially satisfactory manner―has become a major concern for many developing and emerging economies. The problem has taken on a new urgency in times of rapid urbanization.

Ciudad Saludable's advocacy work has brought effective waste management to the forefront of political priorities in Peru. Ciudad Saludable is a driving force and a leading player in Peru and has helped to create awareness and willingness to address waste management and to develop new legislation in Latin America. Breakthroughs in addition to the legislative framework, in facilitating a national and local dialogue and in education that Ciudad Saludable made happen, include:

- A post-graduate program in integrated waste management.

- A "National Roundtable on Recycling" in 2010

- Support of the creation of MUNIRED (Red de Municipalidades Urbanas y Rurales del Peru (Network of Peruvian urban and rural municipalities) and the Table for National Dialogue on Cleanliness.

Ciudad Saludable strongly believes in the importance of an integrated solid waste management system. Ciudad Saludable’s model empowers local waste picker enterprises that collect and process garbage, reduce waste volume in municipal landfills and generate greater income by separating recyclables. These microenterprises are spinning off additional microenterprises that produce compost and other marketable by-products.

- Collection of waste in 200 Peruvian cities (1,835 cities overall) -- Ciudad Saludable reaches 30% of the Peruvian population

-  Amount of recyclable material recuperated by recyclers (only 2009): 292,636.94 (tons/year). This is the equivalent of 28,914,852.51 ft²

- Sales value of recyclables per year: $18.5 M (about 51 M PEN)

- Organized waste pickers: 11,500

- Amount of formalized recyclers: 6,500

- Savings of families due to lower rate of diseases related to waste:$1 M per year

- Amount of rural and urban poor that benefits directly or indirectly: 9 million

- Amount of environmental waste management microenterprises created through Ciudad Saludable’s technical assistance: 35

- Amount of the microenterprises’ employees: 600

- Wage of employees: Up to two times the minimal wage (between $180-$260).

- Employee benefits include: Health, pension, vacation

- % of waste collection rates of the city government: 40%

% of waste collection rate in Ciudad Saludable’s program area: 80%

- Membership of the Association of Independent Environmental Workers for the Recuperation of Solid Waste, created by Ciudad Saludable: 6,000

- Amount of municipalities where public workers were trained: 300

- Pounds processed and sold made out of organic waste: 800,000

- Trees saved per year through collection of paper and cardboard           : about 2 million

- Amount of waste picker associations: 67

Key Facts

Organization: Ciudad Saludable
Contact: Albina Ruiz
Operating in: Latin America and India


Success Stories
Waste Management & Recycling