Tag Archives | quality of life

Buenos Aires to Clean Up Dog Poop on City Streets

In what is sure to be good news to many expat ears, the mayor of Buenos Aires, Mauricio Macri, today announced a comprehensive plan to eliminate dog poop from city sidewalks.

While this may be nothing more than an election year maneuver to appease the many voters who have had to clean out the crevices of their shoes with an old toothbrush, his comprehensive plan has many merits. The plan involves the following:

  • Reassigning Metropolitan Police to “quality of life” patrols where they will fine dog owners who do not pick up after their pets $500 pesos for a first-time violation, $1000 pesos for a second offense and $4000 pesos for any additional offenses
  • Providing dog waste bags on every pole where there is an orange trash bin
  • “Deputizing” old, retired people as a part of a “quality of life neighborhood watch” which would allow them to issue tickets as well as harass pet owners who do not pick up
  • Hiring additional street cleaners whose sole job will be to pick up dog waste that may have slipped through the cracks
  • Providing additional funding for no-kill shelters to get dogs off the street, spayed or neutered, and adopted
  • Handing out tens of thousands of paper flyers to people on the streets to publicize these new measures and fines

In addition to their “poop patrol” duties, these new quality of life officers will begin to fine property owners who have broken or loose sidewalk tiles in front of their buildings.

Macri said (translated), “Buenos Aires has been called the ‘Paris of South America’ many times, and while that is flattering in many respects, it’s time we end the dog excrement aspect of that comparison once and for all. Argentina added new holidays to the calendar last year to help promote tourism, but let’s go a step further and give tourists and expats one less thing to complain about when they come to our great city. As for our residents, we will end over 650 hospital visits per year by people who slip on dog poop, save on water by allowing building encargados to clean their sidewalks less frequently, and improve the overall smell of the city in the summertime.”

Surprisingly, he had bi-partisan support for this proposal and it passed with majority approval. It is slated to go into effect on April 1, 2011. We’ll see what happens…



Buenos Aires Environmental Progress

It seems that the Buenos Aires government is making strides on quality of life and environmental issues.  This process has picked up a lot of steam recently.

Cartoneros en Buenos Aires

credit: gonzaaaa

New Recycling and ‘Zero Waste’ Law
In July, the city government announced a new garbage management plan which involves cartoneros (Página 12: es | en). This new plan will install rules for waste management companies, let cartoneros handle all recyclables, and establish a Zero Waste law to reduce the amount of trash that goes to landfills.

Fighting Visual Pollution

credit: alex-s

credit: alex-s

Two weeks ago, the Buenos Aires government announced a plan to fight visual pollution by eliminating 40,000 billboards in the city (La Nacion: es | en).  This new law will divide the city into three zones: residential, commercial and the Republic Square. The amount and type of advertising allowed in each zone will be defined. The law also establishes regulations on lighting of such signs as well as colors. In addition, the law forbids the total covering of the side of a building, certain types of billboards and the installation of advertising on houses and buildings.

New Air and Noise Control Devices

credit: La Nacion

credit: La Nacion

Last week, they announced a new initiative to monitor air and noise quality in the city (La Nacion: es | en). This included an initial installation of 42 new Intelligent Monitoring Towers which monitor the concentration of carbon monoxide, ozone, benzene and moisture among other environmental factors.  These will be calibrated and then moved to various parts of the city by the end of the year, providing the government with a complete map of noise and air quality in the city.  This could lead to the modification of some city bus routes.

You can visit Treehugger to read more about these stories:
New Garbage Management Plans for Buenos Aires to Involve Cartoneros
Buenos Aires to Remove 40 Thousand Billboards to Fight Visual Pollution
New Air and Noise Control Devices Promise Better Life-Quality in Buenos Aires