Alencop: an inclusive, sustainable and transforming cooperative

In 2015 a group of people of different sub-Saharan African nationalities decided to set up Alencop, a cooperative guaranteeing dignified working and life conditions for people correctly collecting and managing scrap metal and unused electrical appliances. The project is an example of new, clean and sustainable industry, at the same time breathing life into the city’s industrial estates, with new premises in the Bon Pastor neighbourhood.

25/04/2018 16:45 h

Ajuntament de Barcelona

New industry

Alencop currently runs a free home collection service for scrap metal and home electrical appliances in the districts of Sant Martí, Sant Andreu and three neighbourhoods in L’Eixample (Dreta de l’Eixample, Fort Pienc and Sagrada Família). The new premises will allow the cooperative to extend their operating radius to the districts of Sants, Esquerra de l’Eixample and half of Nou Barris.

The initiative is part of the Neighbourhood Plan for Bon Pastor and Baró de Viver, which includes specific action to add vitality to the industrial estate by using empty premises for cooperatives and projects from the green and circular economy. It is also part of the economic development plan for the district, mainly based around non-polluting and transformational reindustrialisation.

Social and cooperative economy

A new repair service is being set up with the aim of extending the life of home electrical appliances, making it possible for them to be reused. Once repaired, they will be sold at the new second hand appliance shop, which will also soon have an online version. A space is also being prepared where people will be able to repair appliances with tools and expert guidance from Alencop.

Last year the cooperative made 110 collections a month, on average collecting 66 kg of materials. They are currently waiting to obtain their waste management licence to be able to treat collected items and break them down for scrap, a task currently done by recycling plants.

Besides the local impact in terms of environmental sustainability, the goal for the cooperative is to favour social integration and the economic training of people in vulnerable situations. Alencop regularises the legal situation of its members via work contracts, as well as covering their basic housing and training needs.

 

 

 

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