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Gonzalo Muñoz

Inspired by 10 years running traditional food businesses where witnessed the waste generated by the private sector, in 2009, co-founded and has led TriCiclos, one of the more recognized Latin American companies in circular economy and recycling. Work aims to offer innovative services and products that help the environment while also being financially sustainable. Launched TriCiclos in Chile, then moved it to Brazil and now operates in 11 countries in Latin America. Its mission is to foster new designs for a world without waste. TriCiclos was also the first company to become a certified B corporation outside North America. Nominated by the Chilean presidency and the United Nations as the High Level Climate Champion for the 25th Conference of the Parties (COP25) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to mobilize climate action in non-state actors around the world, as well as advise the presidency of COP25.

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For-profit Social Enterprise
Advanced Materials; Sustainable Development; Circular Economy; Brazil; Chile
Areas of Impact
Latin America, Chile


Triciclos is making it easier for the public to start recycling by creating a series of convenient clean collection points (CCP) where both businesses and ordinary people can drop off their garbage, learn about sustainable habits and see how materials are separated by TriCiclos staff. It also works to replace the financial incentives scheme currently encouraging more waste and garbage by developing relationships with municipalities and other sectors of the government. These CCPs are mostly run by street waste pickers who see their role as environmental monitors.

The TriCiclos mantra is “Waste is an error of design”, which aims to encourage businesses and institutions to embrace the co-designer of a new sustainability culture. Triciclos shares a percentage of the profits coming from the sale of recycled materials with them, as credit toward the initial cost of purchase and ongoing maintenance. The result is that the more these actors recycle, the more they earn. And the more they engage the public through awareness-raising campaigns, the more their share increases. In addition, beyond the immediate financial reward, businesses benefit from a positive reputation for being “green” and “sustainable.” The combination of awareness-raising and the provision of accessible recycling points is effectively working towards closing the gap between merely understanding the problem and taking action.

Triciclos is currently running 64 CCPs in Chile, which receive more than 47,000 visits every month, and is commencing operations in Brazil and Argentina. Since their inception, Triciclos has recycled over 5,490 metric tonnes of waste. In 2012, TriCiclos became the first certified B corporation in South America. Through that model, it has achieved best practices in many fields.