Brazilian Mayors visit Barcelona’s mobility, solid waste treatment and technology experiences


On the last November 12th, UCLG joined a group of Brazilian mayors and public officers that visited Barcelona, in a technical visits’ day organized annually by the National Front of Mayors of Brazil (FNP), member of UCLG, gathering the cities of Aracaju, Cariacica, Curitiba, Guarulhos, Jaguariúna, Joao Pessoa, Niterói, Palmas, Porto Velho, Ribeirao Preto, Salvador, Sao José dos Campos e Sorocaba.

For Mayor of Aracajú and FNP’s Vice-President of relations with forums and networks, “the presence of Mayors learning concrete experiences in the field, such as the solid waste treatment plant in Barcelona, is fundamental to change the reality of Brazilian cities and in particular my city, Aracaju, and to improve our public policies, to impact directly on citizens’ lives, and design more creative, inclusive and sustainable cities”. 

In this year’s visit, mayors learned about the experiences of Barcelona’s metropolitan mobility system, at the “Transports Metropolitans de Barcelona” (TMB) where they learned about the history of TMB how to integrate and improve the metropolitan system taking into account different government actors and articulating local, regional and national attributions. 

On the second part of the visit, mayors visited the Ecoparc of Barcelona, where they could learn firsthand the functioning of Barcelona’s solid waste treatment which starts in every house (by sorting recyclable and organic materials), and how the daily collection and the subterranean ducts of solid waste works. They then visited the industrial waste treatment plant, which transforms waste gases into energy (that sustains the functioning factory).

Their third visit was to the technological neighborhood project 22@Barcelona that is transforming an old industrial region into a diversified territory, enabling the coming of service activities and high quality economic activities, providing public services and proper infrastructure. In this occasion they also visited Barcelona @ctiva, the instrument that offers technological capacitation and helps organizing cooperatives and new entrepreneurship initiatives.

At the end of that day they met Catalan investors in a meeting organized by the Catalan-Brazil Chamber of Commerce, with the presence of the former Mayor of Barcelona and Executive Director of UN-Habitat, Joan Clos. On the following day, Mayor of Barcelona and Co-President of UCLG, Ada Colau welcomed Brazilian mayors.

Throughout the week, mayors took part on the Smart Cities Expo World Congress and learned about innovative initiatives to overcome the challenges faced by cities throughout the world. During this event, UCLG also took part on various activities including mobility, the localizing of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the process of the 2030 Agenda.