The Garbage Crisis in Venezuela: Sanitation Issues When the SHTF
By J.G. Martinez D.
It´s surprising how bad news related to situations generated by the collapse doesn´t stop. I have some ties to a relatively small town. It´s located not so close to any major city, not so far away neither. It´s not so rural, and it still has some of the charms of small towns, while being big enough to not be boring.
That being said, let´s proceed with the most important news I´ve received from my sources there.
With the lack of income, as all of the few money produced is going to someplace (which is not exactly the majority of the Venezuelan people´s pockets but to some tax haven, or maybe private accounts in Turkey, Iran, Andorra or God knows where). Managing a 30 million people country is not exactly easy. And with such a stressed economy, our country is a real mess.
But it´s the only one I´ve got, and have to love it.
There’s a sanitation crisis.
As in most of the cities, the collapse has impeded to the (not elected but imposed by the ruling mafia) “authorities” to handle properly some crucial aspects like city sanitation and public garbage collection system. Collector trucks are no longer functional in almost any city. This originates a huge business for private “spontaneous” entrepreneurs, who swiftly prompt to offer their garbage collection to the communities. Of course, the city employees in charge of the trucks have (very likely) been previously bribed to sabotage the trucks and equipment. No surprises there. Otherwise, those trucks would be working flawlessly, those things are built for heavy-duty. I know what I´m talking about. These “entrepreneurs” hire a few young men to collect and make their routes in the communities. When these brave, generous and kind souls (and yes, I´m being sarcastic as heck) don´t show, garbage starts to pile up. This is exactly what has been happening these last few weeks.
For some reason, from November to after Mardi Gras in February, fires in some places suddenly start. Wild bushes are burning to the ground. Entire mountains that otherwise would be covered in green, are desolated and sad. It´s something unexplainable, and it´s just one of the most outstanding pieces of evidence we could have been populated with the wrong kind of seed. Because many of the areas surrounding the places where fires appear, are the same blocking the roads with violence demanding “the government” to install water pipelines (instead of banding together and work for one month digging a pond to collect some rain water…but maybe I´m wrong by thinking this way).
Trash is being improperly handled and people are getting sick.
When the “private” garbage collection system does not work, people have to deal with the waste. When the town is over 20k people…this can start to become uphill. Especially if it´s a small valley. So people started to select random places to pile up the garbage bags, throw some fuel on, and burn them. My friends living in that town reported that, after two months of such treatment, there was a thick layer of smoke, almost every day since they began.
The person submitting this report was sick with pneumonia, indeed. This is a strong alert. He was in bed, and unable to work.
It´s not healthy to send such amounts of chemicals into the atmosphere!! That person reported to me feeling his nostrils burn, and a few hours later his throat and even his eyes were swollen. This and other symptoms, like sudden weakening and being tired, was what made him look for medical care. Thanks to God, it’s a small town, and good doctors (many of them known by my parents since they were kids) have been able to survive the crisis without running away, as many nurses in the private practice.
You just can´t burn plastics, polymers and all kinds of similar stuff and expect the wind to take it away harmlessly.
It´s going to some other place, and deposit itself there.
It´s heavier than air! What were you expecting?
I am not a specialist on this. But some useful lessons can be learned. Those of you in the bigger countries with more industries, have already a huge advantage at your favor: a fully developed industry, and a recycling culture dating from decades ago.
An entire industry surrounding the recycling, indeed. That is wonderful, and one of the best things we should learn all over the world. Most of the South American countries have barely an incipient industry of this kind, at best. Why, if this is an industry with so much potential? I really don´t know. But in the 5 countries, I´ve been, it´s not easy to find a well-tuned recycling facility. Some exceptions, of course, but we could do much better.
Use that in your favor, then.
The worst thing is, this is happening in some other parts of the country. Waste is being openly burned, without any consideration for the inhabitants of the nearby communities. This is generating already some diseases in the breathing apparatus of people. We all know already how antibiotics are scarce and expensive, so getting sick because of a totally avoidable cause is…well, unfair. So to speak. People are burning here and there the trash, using empty lots, without too much control nor care and the smoke is getting people sick.
Biodigesters are one answer.
Most people don´t have the habit of selecting the waste to dispose of in a more environmentally friendly manner. That´s why biodigesters are one of my priorities. Using all of the fruits and vegetable residues to generate fuel for my kitchen in a country where you have to get on a 5 hours line to buy bottled gas? Priceless. (F*** u, Commies. Pardon my French, people)
It´s quite interesting to learn this. One could suppose that, under the current circumstances, less food and consumables available because of the collapsing economy would mean much less waste.
But as I´ve mentioned in some other articles, something odd seems to be happening with the economy: over 120 fancy, luxury places have been opened, and almost all of them with ties traceable straight to people related to the ruling mafia. And this, somehow, added to the recent Christmas season, ended up increasing the amount of waste. However, people found some creative ways to “recycle” some stuff, especially with the lack of toilet paper. There is a lot of options with this.
But let´s keep talking about waste disposal. Biodigesters would take care of most of our vegetable residues. Used TP (and anything used to replace it) can be burned in a small, and dedicated firepit dug into the ground. However, polymers need some other treatment to decompose properly, just like metals. It´s not all that bad, after all. If we choose wisely, we should be in a position generating a small amount of waste, manageable enough without harming our patch of land and consequently affecting the surrounding ecosystem.
Be sure to have masks.
After this story, I find quite important to have in our BOB a good gas or dust protection mask. I´d have to select carefully what to carry because an Israeli type mask would mean a huge problem if some commies get their nose inside my bag. Those guys have been brainwashed to the extreme, and just by showing off to their superiors (although this attitude is universally found, really) they are doing their work, could make someone go through a hard time just for fun.
Roaming on a bike, and getting into a dense cloud product of wildfires (this has already happened to me, and it´s quite dangerous and scary).
I even saw many (deadly) accidents because of stupid drivers launching inside a dense cloud next to wildfires at the side of the road, without any visibility. Gene Pool cleaning, though.
A side effect of the garbage piles, other than suffocating the population, is the increasing amount of vermin like rats and mice.
This collapse has not been something easy to deal with.
It has affected millions of people, my family included in one way or another. It´s not something you wish to get into, but you just can´t avoid it. You can be prepared, or partially prepared as I thought I was. If my financial situation in the good times would have been better, my cottage would have been ready. It´s a shame family situation got into all of this and messed up with the plans. Should I have known how things were abroad, I´d thought twice about being here for so long and spending all of my hard-earned money paying rent, instead of investing in my cottage.
However, some reports of improvement have been showing up. However, this is going to need a careful review, with boots on the ground to assess properly the degree of the devastation. People with businesses can´t just pack and leave behind their lifetime efforts. This is something that many people seem not to understand when I talk about coming back, even for a short time. There are a lot of patrimonies I have to take care of. Not just mine but my kiddo’s.
That will be covered in more detail in the next few weeks. So please stay tuned.
Thanks for your reading, and I appreciate a lot all of your donations!
See you soon, and be safe!
Jose is an upper middle class professional. He is a former worker of the oil state company with a Bachelor’s degree from one of the best national Universities. He has a small 4 members family, plus two cats and a dog. An old but in good shape SUV, a good 150 square meters house in a nice neighborhood, in a small but (formerly) prosperous city with two middle size malls. Jose is a prepper and shares his eyewitness accounts and survival stories from the collapse of his beloved Venezuela. Thanks to your help Jose has gotten his family out of Venezuela. They are currently setting up a new life in another country. Follow Jose on YouTube and gain access to his exclusive content on Patreon. Donations: paypal.me/JoseM151
About the Author
About Jose Jose is an upper middle class professional. He is a former worker of the oil state company with a Bachelor’s degree from one of the best national Universities. He has a small 4 members family, plus two cats and a dog. An old but in good shape SUV, a good 150 square meters house in a nice neighborhood, in a small but (formerly) prosperous city with two middle size malls. Jose is a prepper and shares his eyewitness accounts and survival stories from the collapse of his beloved Venezuela. Thanks to your help Jose has gotten his family out of Venezuela. They are currently setting up a new life in another country. Follow Jose on YouTube and gain access to his exclusive content on Patreon. Donations: paypal.me/JoseM151