Reuse of pallets and coils generates income and self-esteem in Bahia

Published on Tuesday, 17 October 2017

“A relatively simple initiative managed to change a lot for us. It gave us self-esteem, hope and the will to modify our reality”

– Gautier Amorim, President of the Senhor do Bomfim settlement

In December and May, an Italian design team hired by Enel’s sustainability department spent a few days in the town of Tabocas do Brejo Velho, close to the Ituverava Solar Plant, in the countryside of Bahia. Professionals from the Controprogetto lab, who specialises in building accessories and furniture using recyclable materials, taught woodworking and design techniques to the local community. In total, 19 people were trained and at least 20 others were impacted by the project:

“We dedicate ourselves to recycled materials because we are fascinated by the stories and the life that these materials reveal. What really impressed me was the enthusiasm and the will to build a new trajectory from the pallets that would have been discarded. This work here in Bahia made me very glad and proud”

– Davide Rampanelli, Controprogetto Designer

As well as reducing the negative impact to the environment, the project aims to bring socioeconomic development to the local community, as highlighted by Débora Pinho, Manager of Sustainability in Generation and Transmission Projects:

“This experience has proved to be a great practice for the creation of shared value. We are advancing in establishing a sustainable site model for construction works, aiming to reduce waste, improvisation and the social and environmental impact. The reuse of pallets is one of several initiatives that stand out within this model and we have a goal of extending this project to other Enel construction works in Brazil”

– Débora Pinho

At the Senhor do Bonfim settlement, Vanda Lopes da Silva was one of the most excited participants:

“Tabocas do Brejo Velho is a reference as the hottest sun in Latin America. And the human warmth we have here to work and host people that come to help us is also a very strong kind of energy. I know how important solar power is, but in my opinion, the human energy is even more important”

– Vanda Lopes da Silva