February 5, 2023

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The Atacama Desert is a masterpiece of nature that has become the world’s garbage dump

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Chile’s Atacama Desert has an open landscape. If it claims a unique ecosystem, it is threatened by the planet’s waste.

Thousands of tons of waste are stored in the Chilean Atacama Desert, one of the most beautiful in South America. There are thousands of car wrecks, but also clothes as far as the eye can see, which come from all over the world. Most are used, but some are new. “Environmental risk, public health risk”Lawyer and environmentalist Pauline Silva sums it up.

“We are the scum of the world”

In recent years, the Atacama Desert has been filled with uncontrolled and illegal dumping. Chile has made a specialty of the second-hand trade. Goods arrive at the port of Iquique (Chile) from Europe, Asia or the Americas before being placed on the Chilean market or re-exported to neighboring countries. Those who do not find takers land in the Atacama, where they are abandoned by unscrupulous middlemen. “We are the scum of the world”Alto Hospico (Chile) Mayor Patricio Ferreira condemns state inaction.

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