Costa del Sol’s Lost Objects Catalogue in Spain Collects Over 500 Valuables from the Garbage of Municipalities in Malaga

Lost Treasures: Over €15,000 worth of jewellery is found each year at the plant. Credit: Environmental Complex of the Costa del Sol.

THE Environmental Complex of the Costa del Sol in Casares treats the waste from 11 joint municipalities, in the case that they may find valuable objects in the bins these are recovered and catalogued in the hope that they may be reunited with their rightful owner.

So far, the facility has recovered over 500 valuable objects after signing an agreement with Urbaser (the company operating the plant) and the Casares Town Hall in February of 2019 to create a catalogue of objects. However, no one has claimed any of the possessions yet.

A majority of the pieces in the catalogue are jewellery, mostly rings, amulets or earrings and they are all featured on a digital platform which is run by the municipal ordinance regulation the Deposit, Custody, and Return of Lost Objects.

Juan Luis Villalón, the municipal delegate for Citizen Security and responsible for the Commonwealth of the Environmental Complex has explained that these items are protected because in order to recover a lost object ownership must be proven.

As the saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, managers have pointed out that each year the plant recovers around €15,000 worth of valuable jewellery.

The ordinance clearly states that people looking to claim a possession must provide personal data, and must justify that it is their property in a “reliable way”; either by presenting invoices, contracts or any other document or means that demonstrates it.

In the case of not having any document or means, they must provide a detailed and precise description of the object, as well as any other data deemed necessary or required by the acting official.

Likewise, the agreement signed between the City Council of Casares and the Environmental Complex of the Costa del Sol foresees the an end must be given to objects that are not claimed.

These items will be partly destined to local non-profit associations and causes that have a social impact on the inhabitants of the municipality.

In order to separate the good stuff from the bad stuff, the plant has a trained worker who acts similarly to a jeweller. After undergoing a thorough cleaning process, the pieces are studied to determine its authenticity and value.

Therefore, they can carry out tests to know if something is just costume jewellery or gold and silver. They see how many carats each piece has and even find precious stones in some pieces.

To find the pieces, the plant has adopted a type of machinery which can locate these treasures amongst all the 350,000 tonnes of waste which passes through the facility each year.

If you think you may have lost something this way, follow this link to sort through the catalogue.


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Written by

Laura Kemp

Originally from UK, Laura is based in Axarquia and is a writer for the Euro Weekly News covering news and features. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]


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