With almost 180,000 inhabitants, Reggio Calabria, is the largest and the most populated city of Calabria, a region in southern Italy. In 2014, in an attempt to comply with Italian laws on waste disposal, was introduced a door-to-door separate collection named DifferenziAMOla. To this day, more than 50% of the population still doesn’t pay refuse taxes nor separates its waste. About 100,000 people throw their garbage randomly around the city, everyday.
The AVR is the holding company that deals with waste collection in Reggio Calabria and six other Italian regions, where it also deals with maintenance, waste disposal and decontamination. In June 2020 it was placed under seizure by mafia association and came under judicial administration. Many of its employees have yet to receive several months of back pay. On top of that, all the approved landfills in Calabria are currently closed or full. Tons of illegally dumped waste, even if collected, would have no place to be disposed of. Almost every week garbage heaps are set on fire, causing immense environmental damage.
To date, no politician in office has ever done anything to identify tax evaders, which represent more than 50% of the electorate. Released between the end of 2019 and the beginning of 2021, this project shows the stages of the administrative and social failure of Reggio Calabria, marked by the faces of those who have suffered and fought this dramatic and surreal reality for too many years.
See more of Mauro’s work Here.