Brazil is considered to be the largest country in both Latin America and South America and the fifth-largest country in the world, with a population of more than 211 million people. Brazil is notably a rising economic power having the most influence in South America and has become one of the world’s biggest democracies. The economy of Brazil is unstable due to the financial crisis experienced in the previous years. However, Brazil is gradually rising, though a significant gap between the rich and the poor still exists. The poverty levels in Brazil are still high, with a high population of about six percent in the slums, which are commonly known as Favelas. In Brazil, the prominent slums are found on the outskirts of Sao Pulo and Rio de Janeiro. Sanitation is a significant factor in any environment as it entails the safe disposal of human waste, effective drainage, clean food preparation, and washing stations. Sanitation has been a rampant issue in the slums causing the spread of diseases and deaths among residents in the Favela (Ezeh, 2017). Additionally, the deteriorating sanitation has led to reduced quality of life for 85% of the population in the favelas. Environmental damage has been observed due to open sewers in the slums. There are open sewers in the favelas, while some parts lack formal sewer facilities contributing to poor public health. The poor sanitation in Brazil’s favelas is a result of lack of water, which deteriorates the sanitation levels within the areas.
Conditions in the Brazil Slums
There should be significant consideration of the conditions of the slum to establish sanitary solutions that are appropriate for the favelas. The considerations will significantly boost the condominial system technology. The population in the Favela is subjected to poor living conditions where the infrastructure system do not allow for proper drainage in the areas (Paterson, Mara, & Curtis, 2007). The government should dig up drainage systems that transfer waste to treatment areas away from the favelas. The population in the favelas has caused overcrowding, which has increased the struggle for limited facilities such as toilets. There should be an increase in the number of amenities provided in the slums to ensure that the whole population is adequately served. The favelas lack clean and safe water contributing highly to poor sanitation and hygiene in the area (Mara, 2006). Water is a basic need that can be delivered to the slums through digging up of boreholes in the area and erecting of tanks that gather and store rainwater. The crime rates in the slums are high, with significant gangs securing amenities like water provided by the government and selling it to others for economic gains. Introducing strict authority in favelas will ensure that available amenities are distributed relatively and used appropriately to serve all the residence. There are open sewers in the favelas, while some parts lack formal sewer facilities contributing to poor public health. Human activities have highly contributed to poor sanitation as people poor disposal of waste material, which is swept into the drainage systems and surrounding rivers. Sanitation in the favelas can be improved through waste recycling to prevent environmental pollution.
A major constrains associated with the slums in Brazil is overpopulation in the areas. The slums are relatively affordable, thus attracting a large number of residents. The favelas are also relatively close to the city, where most of the low-income earners have informal jobs. Poor sanitation on the slums contributes highly to the spread of diseases such as diarrhea and typhoid. The crime rates in the areas are high due to an increase in the jobless population. There is a shortage of water in the area contributing to poor sanitation. The slums are poorly planned, with living structures being constructed as per the owner’s desires. Also, the material used to build the structures are of low quality and limit the drainage systems. The slums are located in areas with poor terrain, which affects drainage.
The slums are home to people with different cultural backgrounds and beliefs. A prominent cultural constrain is the poverty levels among the residents. Most of the residents have low incomes and rely on informal jobs that are not predictable. A large population of the people in slums is illiterate, having not gone to any education system. The illiteracy levels contribute to poor sanitation in the area as people are not aware of implications brought about by poor sanitation and lack awareness on ways of maintaining proper sanitation. The diverse cultures present in the slums have contributed to disagreements on appropriate ways to dispose of waste and the sharing of the available amenities.
Technology and System
The sanitation issue in Brazil can be solved through the use of condominial sewerage and water system, which is an affordable and efficient technology. The technology encourages community participation for the development of the sanitation solution, which influences the natural adaptation of the system among the residence (Melo, 2005). The condominial system entails a network of mainline pipes which are buried deep underground, while the smaller pipes are buried closer to the surface connecting to the residence. The condominial sewers are referred to as simplified sewers that can be used in rocky areas and areas at the high groundwater table. The sewers are affordable for the slums as they are built and repaid with construction materials that are found locally. The condominial systems can be expanded into other areas as the residence in the slums increases. There is concurrent management of the greywater in the sewer that can be reused. Implementation of the condominial technology will improve sanitation and hygiene levels in the favelas leading to a healthy and productive population.
Ezeh, A., Oyebode, O., Satterthwaite, D., Chen, Y. F., Ndugwa, R., Sartori, J., … & Caiaffa, W. (2017). The history, geography, and sociology of slums and the health problems of people who live in slums. The lancet, 389(10068), 547-558.
Mara, D. (2006, November). Low-cost Water Supply and Sanitation Technologies: Too Low-cost for Adoption?. In Seminar on Water Governance for Africa, Bradford.
Melo, J. C. (2005). The experience of condominial water and sewerage systems in Brazil. Case studies from Brasılia, Salvador and Parauapebas. Lima: Water and Sanitation Program Latin America.
Paterson, C., Mara, D., & Curtis, T. (2007). Pro-poor sanitation technologies. Geoforum, 38(5), 901-907.