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May 2019 – Uruguay
PAGE Uruguay (Partnership for Action on Green Economy) in collaboration with the Ministry of Industry, Energy and Mining (MIEM) and the Labor Ministry of Uruguay (MTSS), held a workshop in may on the state of Uruguay’s Artisanal Brick Sector. The Latin American Policy Advisory Network for Clean Brick Production (PAN LAC) participated in the event as presenter nd toured the country to take note of the Uruguayan brick sector, with a view to assess the advancement of the sector and to provide Uruguay with recommendations and assistance to address key challenges to modernize brick production towards more economically, socially and environmentally efficient production.
The visit consisted in:
– A two day workshop in Pando, Uruguay (near the capital Montevideo);
– Visit to three producers in Pando;
– Visit to two producers in Florida Uruguay (central Uruguay);
– Visit to two producers ladrilleros in Rivera, Uruguay (northern city near the Brazilian border);
– Visit to a Brick Production School in Rivera;
– Meeting with Municipal Authorities in Rivera;
Approximately 50 persons attended the workshop event, including public officials as well as international experts from Brazil, Colombia, and the United States, and local brick producers. The Minister of Labor as well as a Deputy Secretary of the MIEM and a representative from the ILO – Uruguay also attended and spoke at the event.
The main issues covered were:
– The Clean Production Program and the Formalization of Brick Workers
– Energy efficiency
– Best practices
– Inputs/Natural Resources used in Bricks Production
– Research and Innovation in the Sector
– Environmental aspects of bricks production, focussed on air quality
– Measuring emissions
– The business model for brick production
– Green jobs
– Worker rights at risk in the sector
– Capacity building needs
– Opportunities for Social Organization, Cooperatives, etc.
– Housing policies and the sector
– Cooperative Agreement with the National Brick Makers Movement (MNL)
– Public Procurement
– Micro finances
– the Work of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition’s Bricks Initiative (CCAC)
The activities that took place offered participants an opportunity to take stock of the sector’s advancements and challenges as well as to see the sector at work in different areas of the country.
Similarities were evident between Uruguay’s brick production sector and that of neighbors’ Argentina and Chile. Local actors are keen to learn more about best practices and explores areas of collaboration with local, national, regional and international partners and experts. Opportunities exist in Uruguay to introduce basic technologies to improve brick making efficiency, lower emissions, increase productivity and improve social welfare of workers in the sector.
Among these could be the introduction of aeration methods to lower fuel costs and increase burning efficiency , as well as building fixed ovens which would greatly increase burning efficiency.
Report of the Visit: (in Spanish only)
for more information:
J. Daniel Taillant
Coordinador, Red PAN LAC
+1 415 713 2309