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Sharjah shows the way in caring for the environment
posted on 16/09/2015

The Emirate of Sharjah is leading the region with projects that will build the foundations for a greener and sustainable future and develop Sharjah into the Environmental Capital of the Middle East.
As part of the emirate's strong commitment and concern for the environment, authorities are proactively encouraging and instilling responsible environment practices and a culture of respect for the environment among its residents and citizens, said Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Chairman of Sharjah Media Centre.
Sheikh Sultan emphasised that in line with the vision and guidelines of H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, Sharjah has always followed a tradition of respect for nature and ecological resources.
"As an emirate that boasts one of the most diverse and ecologically rich landscapes in the region, with a long coastline and picturesque beaches along the Gulf of Oman and Arabian Gulf, rich flora and fauna, precious environment resources such as the mangroves of Kalba and the largest number of parks, wildlife and natural reserves in the country, Sharjah is conscious of its responsibility to protect its environment and natural resources," said Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed.
"Sharjah has undertaken a number of historic and ground-breaking initiatives in the past few years to ensure its residents embrace best and healthy environment practices, policies that are in accordance with internationally recognised conventions and guidelines by the United Nations for sustainable development and progress for all", he added.
The communities in Sharjah are encouraged to adopt an environmentally sustainable lifestyle through various awareness and education initiatives. Sharjah is the third largest emirate in the UAE, and also has the highest development rate. All development activities in Sharjah are mandated to follow sustainable development practices.
In an effort to protect the environment in the midst of rapid growth and development in the emirate, the Sharjah Government and Bee'ah have been very proactive towards activities that promote environmental protection and awareness. The Government has pushed for increases in the greenery areas in the emirate that will not only provide recreational areas for families, but will also help reduce the environmental footprint.
The launching of the much acclaimed Bee'ah initiative in 2007 by the emirate was a huge step in this quest for a healthier environment. Bee'ah is dedicated to providing sustainable solutions in environmental and resource management through integrated waste management, renewable energy, facilities management and sustainable development. It also offers environmental consulting and research by providing education and awareness about environmental preservation.
Despite the massive economic development, industrialisation and considerable electricity consumption in the country, the UAE remains within the ‘green zone' in ecological terms, according to the World Health Organisation guidelines.
A WHO report for the Eastern Mediterranean, Regional Strategy for Health and Environment 2014-2019, has noted that "...the UAE has a very low mortality rate resulting from environmental consequences such as air pollution compared to other countries in the region."
The UAE Ministry of Environment and Water's Air Quality Department also asserts that the country's particulate matter of 2.5 levels do not exceed WHO guidelines. This is a result of the importance the country attaches to improving air quality by achieving 90 percent of the WHO Air Quality guidelines as a target by 2021.
The Gulf Ecosystem Research Centre, which was jointly established by Bee'ah and the American University of Sharjah, AUS, to promote environmental research within the region, runs and manages the Air Quality Monitoring Systems project. Researchers at the centre collect data of gas emissions and particles and analyse the results gathered from the Air Quality Monitoring System through a control room and servers located in both the Bee'ah Headquarters and on AUS's campus.
An additional supportive initiative by the emirate is supervised by the Environment and Protected Areas Authority of Sharjah, which aims to preserve the precious ecological and wildlife resources in the emirate. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -

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Bee’ah introduces revolutionary fleet of smart eco-vehicles
posted on 15/09/2015

Bee'ah, the Sharjah Environment Co, has launched its Tandeef Smart Eco-fleet, a revolutionary expansion for vehicular green technology and state-of-the-art functions.
The Smart Eco-fleet is a selection of technologically advanced environmental vehicles added to the fleet of Tandeef, Bee'ah's waste collection division, improving the environmental impact of its operations with lower-emissions and better efficiency. The latest announcement is seen as a significant and vital step towards fully transforming the company's transportation and waste management operations, into the benchmark for the region for sustainable transport.
Bee'ah's Smart Eco-fleet is highlighted by the addition of new Electric Vehicles, a first in UAE in waste management, which includes public cleansers, sweepers, washers, leaf collectors and litter pickers. They're easy, convenient, low noise, and completely sustainable.
In addition, Bee'ah has obtained Combi-wash vehicles, featuring completely hygienic technology, as they collect and clean bins at the same time, which in turn saves time, effort, resources, and manpower.
Compressed Natural Gas is used to operate a number of Tandeef's new CNG vehicles, which also reduces the negative impact of CO2 emissions on the environment.
Commenting on the development, Khaled Al Huraimel, Group CEO of Bee'ah, said, "This new progress in Bee'ah's journey aims at lifting the environmental impact of our fleet, while at the same time demonstrating the innovative nature of environmental progress in the Middle East. We have raised the bar of excellence in terms of harnessing the best environmental practices, helping to elevate the profile and strategic position of the UAE as a world-leading country in sustainability." – Emirates News Agency, WAM -

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Ministry completes first phase of waste-to-energy scheme
posted on 11/04/2015

The Ministry of Environment and Water has completed the first phase of its project to generate energy from solid waste, a senior ministry official said today.
The ministry's Assistant Under Secretary for Environment Affairs, Abdul Rahim Al Hammad, noted, "The Ministry has already finalized a draft document for technical standards, which identifies foundations, requirements and responsibilities of all parties involved."
He further added that the document was agreed to following a series of meetings held by representatives of local authorities involved with the project.
Those at the meetings discussed the criteria and standards for suitable technologies to be utilized in managing waste dumping sites and waste-to-energy plants, and benchmarked them to match international standards and practices.
"The ministry seeks to introduce a new concept for a highly efficient waste management system, with the aim of achieving environmental sustainability, which falls in line with UAE Vision 2021," Al Hammadi said. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -

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Over 100 waste collection trucks in UAE to run on biofuel by 2015 end
posted on 13/02/2015

Municipal solid waste is being converted into fuel for vehicles in the UAE, thereby considerably minimising carbon emission from fossil fuels and the negative environmental impact of waste.
A prominent waste management company in the capital has started using biofuel in six trucks and its entire fleet of 100 trucks will run on biofuel by the end of this year.
Biofuel is a natural alternative for fossil fuels and is made from waste generated by living objects. It is produced using ethanol from naturally grown plant matters thus making it an environment-friendly fuel.
"Apart from reducing pollutants like carbon dioxide, biofuel has proved to be cost-effective and will cut down cost of vehicle maintenance,” Jamal Abdullah Lootah, CEO of Imdaad, an integrated facilities management and environmental services company, told Gulf News on Thursday.
This is part of a wider Waste-to-Energy (WTE) project, the latest concept in sustainable practice to treat municipal solid waste, he said.
The UAE is one of the world's largest per capita producers of waste. The average annual per capita household waste for Dubai and Abu Dhabi stands at 725 and 730 kilograms respectively, Lootah said.
While the construction of the world's largest WtE plant is currently underway in Abu Dhabi at an estimated cost of Dh3 billion, Dubai is not far behind in planning a similar state-of-the-art facility to address the issue of eco-friendly waste management. Plans to construct a comparable facility near Sharjah's main landfill have also been unveiled.
The UAE plans to produce biodiesel by processing and reusing waste cooking oil as a sustainable energy solution that can contribute to the country's renewable energy generation targets. The production of biomethane that can fuel vehicles from greenhouse gases (GHG) emitted from landfills is also being eyed. – Gulf News -

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ECOWaste 2015 kicks off in Abu Dhabi
posted on 20/01/2015

The 2nd edition of ECOWaste, a key platform dedicated to showcasing next generation waste management and recycling solutions, kicked off yesterday at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre as part of the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW).
The four-day event offers an ideal platform for networking, sharing knowledge and best practices and launching new projects and technologies in integrated waste management sector. It has drawn nearly 50 local and international companies along with 2,000 buyers and specialists in waste management and recycling.
Eisa Saif Al Qubaisi, General Manager, Tadweer, said: "Tadweer's engagement with the second edition of ECOWaste as a strategic partner underscores our commitment to strengthening the leading status of Abu Dhabi as a pioneer in sustainable waste management. Our participation is aligned with our ongoing efforts to continuously enhance the organisational performance of Tadweer through exploring the latest technologies and best practices in integrated waste management to create a safer, cleaner and sustainable future for next generations, while finding efficient and economically viable solutions for our evolving waste management needs." The exhibition includes a meeting of GCC municipalities on 20 January to discuss integrated waste management, integrated pest control management, as well as production and joint marketing of recycled products throughout the GCC. The meeting will be headlined by representatives from Be'ah – Oman, Riyadh Municipality - Saudi Arabia, Greater Amman Municipality - Jordan, Eastern Region Municipality - Saudi Arabia, Makkah Municipality - Saudi Arabia, Manama Municipality - Bahrain and Doha Municipality - Qatar.
Tadweer has also set up an awareness pavilion to educate visitors about its key objectives and activities. In addition, Tadweer's environment guides are conducting workshops for children to highlight the importance of waste reduction, reuse and recycle, public hygiene, environmental safety and using black and green waste bins meant for waste segregation. Experts are on hand to outline optimal waste and natural resource utilisation methods to promote waste reduction at source.
Another highlight of ECOWaste this year is the Buyers Programme, which hosts leading investors in waste management sector from different countries, including Partnership Technical Bureau (PTB) Kuwait, Be'ah - Oman, Dubai Municipality, Al Ain City Municipality (AACM) and Tadweer (Centre of Waste Management - Abu Dhabi).
The Centre of Waste Management (Tadweer) is tasked with the collection, maintenance, transportation, and the processing of waste management services in a safe, efficient and economically-viable manner in Abu Dhabi. – Emirates News Agency, WAM –

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Sharjah Ruler directs construction of waste-to-energy plant
posted on 13/11/2014

H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, on Wednesday gave directives for constructing a plant to recover energy from waste in the emirate fo Sharjah.
H.H. Sheikh Sultan gave the directives as he toured Al-Saj'ah, the location of the Bee'ah Waste Management Centre, one of the largest waste management plants in the world.
He also gave directve to build a headquarters for Bee'ah in the same area.
While there, H.H. Sheikh Sultan toured the different sections of the facility which recycles construction waste, medical waste, vehicles' tires, used vehicles, metal waste and organic fertilisers.
Bee'ah was established in 2007 and is the Middle East's leading and award-winning fully integrated environment and waste management company.
Mohammed Khalid Al Owais, Chairman of Bee'ah, who welcomed H.H. Sheikh Sultan at the location, affirmed Bee'ah's commitment to transform Sharjah into the first city in the Middle East to achieve Zero-Waste-To-Landfill by 2015 On Saturday, Bee'ah, was named ‘Sustainable Waste Management Company of the Year' at the BGreen Awards 2014 – the second consecutive year it has picked up the prestigious accolade.
Among Bee'ah's projects is a new metal recycling facility, with a throughput capacity of 200 tons per hour in municipal solid waste.
It also launched a ‘Recycling Just Got Easier' Campaign, distributing recycling bins in key locations across Sharjah, established a first-of-its-kind ‘You Call, We Haul' initiative, and launched pioneering new smart-bins in the Emirate, equipped with wireless sensors to maximise their efficacy. Bee'ah's goal is "Zero Waste to Landfill" in Sharjah. - Emirates News Agency, WAM –

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An underground city of pipes in Abu Dhabi
posted on 28/09/2014

Deep below the ground you walk on in the Capital is a city of pipes — a complex network encompassing thousands of kilometres; the lifeline of sewage disposal in the emirate.
"There are the electric wires; water and gas pipes; and the last is us, 100 metres below ground,” said Alan Thomson, managing director of Abu Dhabi Sewerage Services Company (ADSSC).
This network of 7,000km of sewer pipes collects everything that is flushed down the drain and transports it to treatment plants.
"Presently, Abu Dhabi produces 850 mega litres (850,000 cubic meters) of sewage per day. It all goes through three stages of treatment, and the result is water as clear as this one in the glass,” he illustrated.
The treated wastewater ends up with zero per cent impurities, being just one step further from becoming potable. That step, involving adding minerals to the purified water, is a massive investment and not yet worth it.
Only a handful of countries worldwide are commercialising drinkable wastewater and although perfectly safe and clean, not many people are keen on drinking it.
"In Abu Dhabi, all treated wastewater is used for greenery and forestry irrigation. It could be perfectly safe for farming too, but our infrastructure does not allow for that (currently). If we had treatment plants near farm lands, then it could be done,” Thomson pointed out.
Across the emirate, the ADSSC has 41 treatment plants that purify all of Abu Dhabi's wastewater, thus alleviating the need for sewage to end up in the sea. Yet, only 60 per cent of the treated wastewater is used. Still, this saves about 12 per cent of potable water, whether from ground or desalination sources.
"In the future, we plan to re-use 100 per cent of treated wastewater, which would save 20 per cent of potable water,” said Thomson.
That future is about five years from now, when the ADSSC would improve its infrastructure. According to Thomson, four new treatment plants have been commissioned — two in Abu Dhabi with a capacity of 300 mega litres per day each, and two in Al Ain with a combined capacity of 230 mega litres per day.
Residential sewage
Although there is sewage produced by the business and industry sectors, the majority is residential. With the emirate's population constantly growing, so does its sewerage needs. According to the ADSSC, the sewerage requirements go up by eight per cent annually.
Treating wastewater does have a negative impact on the environment, since it involves the use of chemicals and electricity consumption, but the ADSSC is keeping this impact to a minimum.
Chemicals are only used for disinfecting treated water, otherwise the process is a natural one, using good bacteria to kill off the bad ones.
Getting the sewage to the treatment plants is another environmental achievement.
"We collect sewage using gravity. The household drains are connected to the collection pipes, which are not horizontal, but go down, deeper and deeper underground,” said Thomson. "Only when they are too deep we use a pump to bring the sewage up to the treating plants.”
The ADSSC's "greatest ongoing project”, the Strategic Tunnel Enhancement Programme (Step) is meant to further improve the sewerage collection system. Started in 2008, the Dh5.6-billion project will be one of the longest gravity-driven sewerage tunnels in the world at 41km.
When completed in 2015, the Step will provide for an average wastewater flow of 800,000 cubic metres per day and it will reach an ultimate capacity of 1.7 million cubic metres per day by 2030.
Apart from the main tunnel, the Step will have 43km of link sewers, which will transport the wastewater to the treatment plants. They will be used to intercept the flows from existing gravity sewers upstream of the pumping stations.
Additionally, the ADSSC also has 150 ongoing projects, including a "rehabilitation programme” for its underground infrastructure.§ion=nationgeneral

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DM to distribute new bins to collect e-waste
posted on 26/09/2014

Based on the directives of Hussain Nasser Lootah, Director General of Dubai Municipality, the Waste Management Department plans to launch a new service providing specific bins for electronic waste in line with the best international practices in collecting electronic waste.
Salah Amiri, Assistant Director-General of Dubai Municipality for environment and public health services sector pointed out that most electronic equipment contains lead and many chemical components that pollute soil and leak into the ground water, which in turn causes huge pollution which in turn poses high risks to bio-diversity and nature.
Nowadays, families and individuals have thousands of electronic electrical devices that collectively weigh millions of tons. Thus, the Waste Management Department has made an agreement with Averda Co. to design an advanced bin exclusively for electronic waste which will be placed in public places such as parks, DM centres, commercial centres and cooperative societies spread over in different areas of the emirate.
He stressed that the move comes as part of the keenness of Dubai Municipality to meet the requirements of its customers in tune with developments in the field of using technologies and related devices with the aim of helping users with the safe disposal of e-waste, ensuring a clean and sustainable environment in the Emirate of Dubai. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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Environmental research projects given go-ahead
posted on 22/07/2014

Innovations in recycling, waste management and water purification are to be given the go-ahead this autumn at Sharjah's Gulf Ecosystem Research Centre.
Founded in 2012, the centre was created through a collaboration between Bee'ah, a waste management company, and the American University of Sharjah (AUS), with the company granting Dh30 million over five years to support scientific research that could bring immediate improvements in the way waste is managed as well as other environmental issues.
"This is an example of how industry and academia can develop a strong partnership to benefit the environment and society,” said Meera Taryam, director of environmental services and education at Bee'ah.
The centre would fill data gaps in the field of environmental research, said Ms Taryam, who added that the funding would be used to benefit projects that could have immediate practical applications, although work to answer broader scientific questions might be supported later.
The collaboration is under the patronage of Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council member, Ruler of Sharjah and president of the university.
About 13 bids for research were received after the centre's first call for proposals opened in spring this year, said Ms Taryam.
She said that the research centre's advisory board was likely to give final approval to selected proposals at the start of the new academic year in September. The advisory board is made up of six members representing Bee'ah and AUS.
Dr Nabil Jabbar, director of the Gulf Ecosystem Research Centre and a professor of chemical engineering at the university, said recycling, water treatment and air pollution control would be the main issues for the centre.
Among the projects under review is research into the treatment of water containing oily residues left over by industry. Another will look at developing concrete from recycled construction and demolition waste aggregate.
"These projects are important in terms of waste treatment and also finding an end product that can minimise the use of raw materials,” said Dr Jabbar.
The faculty involved in the projects had already received initial feedback, related to the scientific merits and the timelines and budgets of the works, and some of the projects have been augmented, he said. "We hope that by autumn 2014 we will be able to kick off these projects.”
While the university funds faculty research, the new centre would allow for more focused work on environmental issues, said Dr Jabbar.
"We have this done already in the university, but now our centre is taking on research that is directly targeting the environment,” he said.
Bee'ah was established in 2007 with the support of the Sharjah government in a move to improve waste management in the emirate.
Since its formation, the company has organised emirate-wide recycling schemes. It has facilities to process construction and demolition waste, old tyres and, since February, scrap cars.
The company is working on building a waste-to-energy facility where rubbish collected from Sharjah that could not be recycled will be burnt, with the heat collected used to produce power.
The U.A.E. has one of the highest rates of waste generation in the world.
Figures from 2010 compiled by the Centre of Waste Management – Abu Dhabi show that residents in that emirate produced between 1.8 and 2.4 kilograms of waste per day – almost half of that produced in the United Kingdom in the same time. The figures are representative for the rest of the U.A.E.. – The National – Read more:

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DM starts door-to-door waste recycling drive
posted on 24/04/2014

Waste headed to landfills in Dubai is set to reduce. Dubai Municipality's (DM) waste management department has announced the expansion of its door-to-door project ‘My City… My Environment', a drive that will ensure more areas in Dubai segregate waste at source, recycle it and thus reduce waste sent to landfills. DM has chosen Dulsco, Averda and Trashco as its strategic partners for the project.
Abdul Majeed Saifaie, Director of waste management department, said that the programme will see volunteers visiting houses in the identified areas and explaining the complete process with regard to this initiative. Residents will also be informed about the campaign through public education activities, road shows, talk shows on radio, posters and banners explaining the importance of the initiative, he further said.
Every house will be given two 240-litre colour-coded green and black bins. Each bin will carry clear instructions. Green bins will be meant for recyclables such as plastic containers, cardboard boxes (flattened out), newspapers, magazines, books, papers, mineral water / glass / plastic bottles (emptied out), aluminium and metal cans, milk and juice bottles. The black coloured bins are meant for all other types of ‘general' waste such as leftover food, vegetable and fruit skins, meat, dairy products, fish waste, disposable cups, trays, containers, paper towels, napkins, eggshells, nutshells etc., he said.
The drive will cover Jumeirah 1, 2 and 3, Al Safa 1 and 2, Umm Suqueim 1, 2 and 3, Al Manara, Umm Al Seif and Al Barsha 2 and 3. "General Waste will be collected daily and recyclables will be collected on alternate days.”
"The Dubai Municipality will discontinue the large trolley waste bins service. Such waste bin trolleys that are placed on the streets will not be visible on road post May 15, 2014 in these areas,” Saifaie added.
The waste collection and recycling service for residents is an initiative that will educate the public and help the municipality efficiently recycle household waste.
Saifaie said: "Dubai adheres to global standards when it comes to cleaner and greener environment. As we are moving forward to host World Expo 2020, our aim is to make Dubai clean and green. Hence, we have launched several such initiatives to create a healthy ecosystem. We are confident that this unique initiative will be a great success with the help of public support. In fact, Dubai residents have always shown great support for anything we do to encourage more recycling in this city”.
In recent years, the Dubai Municipality has encouraged private players to actively support waste collection and transportation. At present, around 70% of the total waste in Dubai is collected by private sector for recycling. – Khaleej Times – Read more:§ion=nationgeneral

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Plastic waste turns a death trap for animals in UAE
posted on 16/04/2014

Deaths of wild animals caused by their by ingesting discarded waste, especially plastics, is increasing in the UAE's deserts as the discarded rubbish is reaching epidemic proportions, underlining the need for more deterrent measures, according to prominent UAE-based scientist, Dr. Ulli Wernery.
"You have plastic in your stomach, it disintegrates slowly and releases a lot of different poisons and then it damages and destroys mainly the intestines and the liver," Dr. Wernery, who is the Scientific Director at Dubai's Central Veterinary Research Laboratory (CVRL), said.
"Death by plastic, a modern phenomenon, takes months, if not years, in most cases, and happens in one of three excruciating ways," Dr. Wernery said in an article published by the Khaleej Times daily. He said that in the first, and most commonplace way, the animal ingests plastic over the course of years that cannot be digested. The plastic sits in the animal's stomach, making it think it is full, so it fails to eat, eventually starving to death. The second way is an obstruction of the animal's intestines, which causes it to die within 48 hours. The third, another long-term death that causes much suffering, is via poisoning.
"With increasingly more campers exploring the UAE's wadis comes more pollution and things are getting worse," he said, "[We need] zero tolerance, and you've got to fine these people, they have to feel it in their pocket, otherwise they will not change." The paper went on to say that it is not just desert animals that are dying, but also marine life, with widely-publicised cases of turtles eating plastic bags that appear to be jellyfish in the motion of the sea.
Dr. Wernery says there is evidence to suggest polar bears and birds that have fed on fish contaminated with tiny particles of broken down plastic, called nurdles, have had their sexual hormones affected, causing a low rate of reproduction or an increased likelihood of male newborns.
This kind of issue is common across the globe, the German scientist says. "Everybody knows that it's bad and getting worse and worse. It's a global problem." – Emirates News Agency, WAM –

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CWM-Abu Dhabi joins hands with Masdar to launch EcoWASTE 2014
posted on 29/12/2013

Hosted by Masdar and held in partnership with the Centre of Waste Management - Abu Dhabi (CWM), the Emirate's first international waste management exhibition, entitled "EcoWASTE 2014", will run from 20th-22nd January during Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC).
Organised by Reed Exhibitions Middle East, EcoWASTE 2014 will bring together leading local and international providers, buyers and industry professionals from the sustainable waste management and recycling sector, and the event will address the challenges posed by increasing waste levels in the region and look to offer inventive, eco-friendly solutions.
Issa Saif Al Qubaisi, General Manager of the Centre of Waste Management - Abu Dhabi, said, "This exhibition has been organised in line with the CWM's strategic objectives to stimulate the participation of stakeholders in the waste management sector. Our efforts will focus on highlighting the Emirate as one of the most environmentally responsible cities in the world for its adoption of sustainable development practices across diverse sectors." Al Qubaisi added, "CWM- Abu Dhabi continually develops and implements sustainable and integrated systems and programmes that are aligned to best global standards for waste management. Co-hosting EcoWASTE 2014 underlines our keenness to improve our track record and apply methodologies that enable us to accomplish our strategic objectives. Through such participation, we hope to achieve safe, effective and economical waste management in various parts of Abu Dhabi." Hani Hossni, EcoWASTE Committee Chairman, Strategy and Business Development Sector Director at CWM, said, "The debut edition of the exhibition will bring together regional and international experts working in the waste management sector from numerous countries that have acquired leadership status for environmentally sustainable practices, such as the United States and Sweden. These experts from both private and public sectors will exchange experiences, ideas and best practices to facilitate new business opportunities." "On the sidelines of EcoWASTE 2014, workshops will highlight best practices in waste management and share updates on modern technology solutions. The event will feature a series of expert-led lectures on sustainability and waste management. Aiming to engage the participation of school students, the Abu Dhabi Education Council will join hands with CWM and Masdar to host awareness talks on the importance of recycling and the implementation of eco-friendly practices in the vicinity of schools and residences", Hosni added.
The Centre of Waste Management - Abu Dhabi is the main government entity responsible for all activities related to the development, collection, maintenance, transportation, and processing of waste in safe, efficient and economical ways, and applies sustainable and integrated systems on a par with the best global standards in order to ensure quality waste management services in Abu Dhabi. - Emirates News Agency, WAM

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UAE devises green strategy to unify existing policies
posted on 18/12/2013

A road map for a cleaner and greener UAE is ready and will be presented to the Cabinet next week.
The National Green Growth Strategy aims to unify the seven emirates' environment policies and develop initiatives in seven key sectors across the country.
"This week we had our last committee meeting,” said Dr Rashid bin Fahad, Minister of Environment and Water. "This week or the next, we will present it to the Cabinet.
"Last year we had a national dialogue with all sectors on ways to transform the UAE economy into a green economy, concentrating on the important sectors. All sectors have agreed on a road map and the means to achieve it.”
Dr bin Fahad was speaking in Dubai to announce the UAE's hosting of the first Global Partnership for Action on Green Economy conference in March next year.
The event, organised with the United Nations Environment Programme, will see world leaders, corporations, scientists and researchers convene in Dubai.
It will build on last year's Rio+20 UN conference in Brazil on sustainable development.
"Green economy is considered as one of the important solutions to solve and rectify the impacts of development on the environment,” Dr bin Fahad said.
"We in the UAE are already green and having such a conference is testimony of the UAE's progress. It is for the world to see for themselves the UAE's projects on sustainability and green economy.
"Having this conference supports the UN's efforts and is for us to learn from other countries.”
The ministry this year announced it would develop a unified green action plan within the next nine months for the oil and gas, water and electricity, transport, building, waste, planning and agricultural sectors.
The Green Growth Strategy for Sustainable Development was launched in January last year by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai.
The new national plan will help integrate the initiatives of the seven emirates, said Aisha Al Abdooli, the ministry's acting assistant Under Secretary for environment affairs.
"We thought we should have all the initiatives under one umbrella. If we have scattered initiatives here and there, you are not serving the purpose,” Ms Al Abdooli said.
"We want to boost the UAE at the international level. The beauty of this strategy is that it builds on existing policies.”
She said that after the strategy was approved by the Cabinet this month, its implementation would begin across the different sectors.
The UN said the Dubai conference would help to create a plan of action for the international community.
"The concept of green economy is mushrooming across the globe,” said Achim Steiner, Under Secretary and executive director of the UN programme.
"The answers we have to find in this day and age will be different from that of the 20th century.
"We are looking forward to this first global conference being the premier platform in which leaders, pioneers, practitioners, policymakers and ministers will come together to assess how successful these policies are, which ones are likely to be replicable in other countries and what can be done for one another.”
Mr Steiner said green economy was not an ideology.
"It is a set of principles that recognise the scientific realities we know today about the limits to pollution and the limits of using nature in a way that will ultimately destroy it if it is not sustainable use,” he said. – The National
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DM monitors private sewage treatment plants
posted on 22/11/2013

Dubai Municipality has intensified its efforts in environmental monitoring of sewage treatment plants operated by private companies.
The move is aimed at preserving the quality of the environment in the emirate of Dubai to ensure the health and safety of society as determined by Dr. Abdul Salam Mohammed Saleh, Head of the Environmental Monitoring Section of Dubai Municipality.
Dr. Abdul Salam said, "The civic body has taken notice of some complaints from the public regarding the odour emerging from areas of certain investment companies. We have already taken action on these companies and asked them to operated in accordance with the approved standards by DM in this field." "The municipality will never allow these plants to disturb the public in any situation. All private sewage treatment plants in the emirate of Dubai, including free zones and real estate development areas, should get the correct environmental permission issued by the Environment Department of Dubai Municipality prior to construction of the plants," he added.
"The Municipality will take stringent action against violators as per the rules and regulations," he warned. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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ADSSC receives Hall of Fame award in USA
posted on 08/11/2013

Abu Dhabi Sewerage Services Company, ADSSC has become the first government institution in Abu Dhabi Emirates to receive Hall of Fame Award for Executing Strategies in Utility and Energy Category at Palladium's Annual Global Submit in Boston, USA.
The award witnessed 15 pioneer organisations from USA, Middle East, Asia, Europe and Africa that achieved dramatic performance outcomes through outstanding strategy execution.
Abdulla Ali Musleh Al Ahbabi, ADSSC Chairman on the occasion said," This award is the fruit of ADSSC efforts since 2005 that goes in line with its strategic plan and serves to fulfill the wise vision of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Ruler of Abu Dhabi and direction of His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Chairman of the Executive Council and followed by H.H. Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, National Security Advisor and Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council.
The ADSSC strategy is closely aligned with Abu Dhabi 2030, which reflects the ambition of Abu Dhabi Emirate to develop economically, socially and environmentally and enhance the living standards in the Emirate in a number of initiatives that encourages and directs development.
According to Mubarak Obaid Al Dhaheri DMD of ADSSC, the recognition was a result of continual efforts of applying Balanced Scorecard doctrines in all ADSSC systems. Also, continuous development of ADSSC strategy that goes in line with required modernisation to ensure local and global recognition.
Alan Thomson, ADSSC MD and Nader Assad Taher, Strategic Planning and Communication Acting Head received the award on behalf of the Chairman.
The Hall of Fame award honours organisations that have achieved excellence in strategy execution through the use of the Balanced Scorecard, the world's pre-eminent strategy management system.
ADSSC is the first government entity in Abu Dhabi Emirate to be awarded in the Utilities and Energy Category and the fifth to obtain the award in the Emirate. The General Secretariat of the Executive Council, Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority, Abu Dhabi Police GHQ and Abu Dhabi Education Council have been previously recognised. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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New drive to promote recycling in Sharjah
posted on 18/10/2013

Beeah, the environmental and waste management company has launched a month-long residential engagement campaign called "Recycle for a Greener Sharjah” to educate the residents of Sharjah about effective waste management, recycling and the negative effects of improper waste disposal.
With last year's awareness campaign results showing a rise in residential recycling levels from 40 per cent to over 52 per cent, the campaign, which started on September 20, hopes to make a positive impact on recycling rates by the end of the year by reaching a higher number of people. Beeah also aims to reach its zero-waste goal for Sharjah by 2015.
"The residents of Sharjah and the UAE have only begun to realise the urgent need for solid waste solutions and this campaign will encourage community members to become active participants in efforts to reduce waste through recycling,” said Khalid Al Huraimel, Group CEO of Beeah.
In addition to the campaign, awareness programmes and education initiative, the Bee'ah School of Environment, which has already reached and educated 164,000 students in over 200 schools across Sharjah, will continue to educate children and young adults in the UAE about the adverse effects of improper waste disposal.
Beeah will also be placing over 25 additional Reverse Vending Machines (RVMs) for plastic bottles, aluminium cans and used light bulbs at the Sharjah Cooperative Society outlets and other locations to encourage recycling. - Gulf News

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First laboratory in UAE to process plastic bags for biodegradability
posted on 16/09/2013

Ajman has completed preparations for the first advanced laboratory in the UAE that measures the decomposability level of the plastic bags and converts them into biodegradable plastic bags.
Plans for inaugurating the new laboratory were made following the Ajman local order number 3 for the year 2010 to ban the use of non-biodegradable plastic bags.
Prior to inaugurating the laboratory, the specialist from the food and environment laboratory of Ajman Municipality paid a visit to a specialised company in the UK to test the devices used in measuring the level of decomposability of the plastic bags and ways of turning them into a recycle material.
The advanced device can take up to 95 per cent of plastic samples that will initially be exposed to UVA rays followed by high oven temperatures which will decompose the poisonous substances.
It is also worth mentioning that Ajman Municipality has been awarded the Golden Award for ideas organisation in the US for implementing and spreading greenery in the emirate and launching environmentally friendly projects.
Sheikh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, chairman of Ajman Municipality, has expressed his happiness by tweeting and felicitating the emirate of Ajman for winning the golden award of the US ideas organisation for the greenery implementation category of the award.
Ajman Municipality has successfully carried out the project aimed at curbing the usage of non-recyclable plastic bags. By 2021 Ajman Municipality plans to make the emirate free of plastic bags while warning society members of the environmental harm caused by the usage of non-recyclable plastic bags. – The Gulf Today
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Centre of Waste Management - Abu Dhabi and Masdar announce EcoWASTE2014
posted on 10/09/2013

The Centre of Waste Management - Abu Dhabi and Masdar have launched a new international exhibition dedicated to waste management and recycling, to be held during Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week next January.
EcoWASTE, hosted by Masdar, Abu Dhabi's renewable energy company, together with the Centre of Waste Management - Abu Dhabi (CWM), and organised by Reed Exhibitions, will address the region's waste disposal challenges to further promote sustainable development and environmental conservation.
EcoWASTE was officially launched yesterday by Majid Al Mansouri, Board Member at the Centre of Waste Management - Abu Dhabi and Chairman, Department of Municipal Affairs (DMA),; Mohamed J. Al Ramahi, Chief Operating Officer of Masdar and Frederic Theux, President of Reed Exhibitions Middle East.
Mohammed Al Bowardi, Chairman of CWM; highlighted the importance of coordinated action in realising sustainable waste management and Abu Dhabi's overarching Vision 2030.
"CWM is mandated to develop and implement an integrated waste management system for Abu Dhabi. At the same time, the issues of waste management and recycling affect the entire Middle East and are global in scale. EcoWASTE will be a valuable opportunity to bring together local knowledge and international expertise to advance innovation and best practice in this field." H.E Dr Sultan Al Jaber, CEO of Masdar said the addition of EcoWASTE to Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week alongside the World Future Energy Summit and International Water Summit underlines the continued emergence of Abu Dhabi as a global platform to promote the wider adoption of sustainable development.
Dr Al Jaber stated that the inclusion of EcoWASTE alongside the World Future Energy Summit recognises that recycling and the conversion of waste materials into power is vital for long-term energy and environmental sustainability. "With its productive output and efficient conversion rate, waste-to-energy is emerging as an attractive clean energy source. EcoWASTE, as a part of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, is the ideal platform to showcase the latest global technologies making this sector more efficient." "The UAE government is very supportive of developing a waste-to-energy strategy as a key green growth technology and recognises that these technologies have the ability to provide a renewable source of energy as well as minimise its landfill challenges. The government is conducting a federal-level review of waste-to-energy technology and policy which will guide the sector into the future," said Dr Al Jaber.
"EcoWASTE will offer a number of business opportunities across the entire solid waste management services sector, introducing new projects, showcasing the latest technologies and sharing knowledge and expertise from both the public and private sector," said Frederic Theux, President of Reed Exhibitions Middle East.
"Co-locating EcoWASTE with the World Future Energy Summit and the International Water Summit in Abu Dhabi provides the most comprehensive exhibition platform yet from which to address sustainable development issues, by effectively integrating the critical need to reduce the environment impact of waste with the importance of managing water resources and the production and consumption of energy more responsibly." Theux said: "Waste management and recycling are rapidly emerging industries and EcoWASTE2014 will host a wide range of specialists offering solutions tailored to the needs of the MENA region, including experts in industrial cleaning, refuse collection, composting, site decontamination, and air pollution monitoring and control." EcoWASTE2014 will be held from January 20-22, 2014 at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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Bee'ah teams up with SAP to achieve zero-waste target
posted on 10/09/2013

To achieve its ambitious target of zero-waste to landfill by 2015 in Sharjah, and its plans to expand operations across the Middle East, Bee'ah, environment and waste management company, has become one of the first government entities in the Middle East to adopt mobile-enabled solutions by joining forces with the world's leading business software company, SAP.
"Bee'ah is proud to be leading the way for waste management in the region, and we are always looking for new ways to improve our performance and future prospects," said Salim Al Owais, chairman, Bee'ah.
According to a report in local daily, The Gulf Today, the company will also become the first of its kind to run on solutions from SAP in an effort to streamline its operations and waste management activities, and by implementing SAP, the company will also benefit from the automation of a host of key processes, added analytical insight and increased operational flexibility. A further phase will incorporate SAP's industry-specific waste management software, to potentially include municipal billing solutions, route and district management, real-time mobile order management, as well as process integration for improved speed and reduced costs.
Earlier this year, the company implemented GPS vehicle tracking and computerised route-optimisation systems to maximise service productivity and develop more efficient routes for waste collection
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CWM-Abu Dhabi launches 12-part cartoon series to develop waste management culture
posted on 25/08/2013

The Centre of Waste Management Abu Dhabi (CWM) has launched a campaign titled 'Khadrah and Soudah', as part of its endeavours to develop a waste management culture in the emirate of Abu Dhabi.
The initiative comes as part of the centre's on-going awareness programs to educate the residents of Abu Dhabi on the importance of reducing waste production and promoting its reuse and recycle.
The campaign includes a 12-part cartoon series titled 'Khadrah and Soudah' (Arabic for green and black) that additionally helps raise awareness on CWM's campaigns and services while spotlighting the concepts of public safety and preservation of the environment.
The series offers solutions to reduce waste production at source and maintain the highest levels of hygiene that Abu Dhabi endorses.
The sequels will also emphasize on the need to adopt best sustainability practices, as well as the concepts of reduce, reuse and recycle.
The first of the series aims to educate the general public on the need to replace the old, open and unhygienic waste bins that are characterized as 'Feddah'. The green bin is referred to as 'Khadrah' while the black bin is named 'Soudah'. The plot narrates the negative consequences resulting from the use of 'Feddah' such as increased pollution and high exposure to diseases.
The Centre of Waste Management Abu Dhabi focuses on the promotion of best practices in waste management, including, reuse, recycling and waste segregation at source. The Centre continuously runs educational and awareness initiatives for Abu Dhabi citizens and community in line with the highest international, regional and local practices. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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From Waste to Energy: Landfill site generates electricity - first in the region
posted on 01/08/2013

Dubai Municipality's largest waste collection site in Al Ghusais started producing electricity on Monday night, becoming the first landfill in the region to run its entire operation with electricity generated from landfill gas.
This is the first time in the Middle East that landfill gas has been converted to generate electricity through the flaring of methane, which is also in line with Dubai Municipality's vision to generate 20MW of power from landfill gas by 2020.
The Municipality's ambitious waste-to-energy project through a landfill gas recovery plant at the site which opened in January, is now producing1MW (1000KW) of electricity to run the high-efficiency gas conversion and flare equipment installed the plant, power for the site offices and lighting at the landfill, spread over an area of 3.5 sq. kilometres, according to reports by local dailies yesterday.
"With Dubai's bid to host the World Expo 2020 going full steam ahead, we are further highlighting our leadership in creating innovative solutions for the future through the project. This 2020 project is set to produce 20MW of power by the turn of the decade," said Eng Hussain Nasser Lootah, Director-General of Dubai Municipality.
"The project also complements the Dubai Integrated Energy Strategy 2030 to explore alternative energy sources that will reduce demand on the existing power grid, while protecting the environment," explained Lootah.
The Al Ghusais Landfill site adopts the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) initiative, which is registered with the United Nations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Through implementing the CDM project, the municipality aims to reduce methane emissions, which is expected to remove 250,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year from the air.
The gas collection system implemented by Green Energy Solutions and Sustainability for the Municipality can recover methane emitted from organic waste and convert it into electricity by flaring gas.
"This environmentally-friendly project involves turning methane gas into electricity, and this is the first stage of transferring electricity to feed the plant and the landfill from 500 cubic metres of methane gas into one megawatt," said Eng Abdul Majeed Saifaie, Director of Waste Management Department at Dubai Municipality.
The Al Ghusais Landfill site has been receiving municipal solid waste since 1978. It is one of the largest sites for municipal waste collection in Dubai, which receives about 5,000 tonnes of waste a day, and with the decomposition of municipal waste, the landfill site emissions are approximately 55 per cent methane and 45 per cent carbon dioxide which until now has been discharged into the atmosphere. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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Converting landfills into green zones
posted on 28/05/2013

Dubai Municipality's Waste Management Department held an environmental campaign under the theme of ‘Plant for the Planet'. Spearheaded by hazardous waste treatment plant officials at their site in Jebel Ali, the objective is to convert a landfill into a green zone.
Green Hope UAE, a youth environmental group, comprising students from various schools in the UAE are working with the municipality's Waste Management Department on this initiative.
Green Hope's primary objective is to involve children and youth of the region in the drive towards sustainable development, and they have been recognised and felicitated by Dubai Municipality for being a part of their ‘Clean Up The World' Campaign.
Green Hope's work in this regard is supported by Al Tamimi Engineering Services LLC, an electro-mechanical contracting company based in Dubai, which focuses greatly on Environmental Conservation activities. – Khaleej Times

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Waste bins monitored by radio-frequency identification in Abu Dhabi
posted on 27/05/2013

Residents calling up to complain about non-collection of waste from their neighbourhood will receive a quick solution as Abu Dhabi is introducing advanced radio-frequency identification (RFID) remote sensor systems to monitor waste containers in the streets from January next year.
Each waste container will have an electronic chip with its geographic and technical details, which can be read by a device in waste collection trucks [through RFID technology] when they come to collect waste, officials said at a press conference yesterday.
The device in the trucks will be linked to a central monitoring station, which can ensure timely collection of waste from containers and their periodic washing, they said
When a complaint is received, the monitoring station can quickly ascertain when the waste was collected last from a container in a particular area and whether waste collection trucks missed any trips, Dr Salem Al Ka'abi, acting general manager, Centre of Waste Management - Abu Dhabi, said.
The new technology will be introduced in two areas of the emirate, where the centre has given waste management contracts to two new companies with effect from January 15, 2014. The technology will be extended to other areas of the emirate gradually.
The centre awarded two contracts worth over Dh770 million to cleaning service providers Alphamed – Lobbe – IFEU and West Coast – Saubermacher Environmental Services. They will operate with new technologies in Lots 3 and 4 of the emirate, which include the geographical areas of Abu Dhabi-Dubai borders in the north, as well as the Abu Dhabi-Al Ain borders in the west and Abu Dhabi--Mussaffah borders in the east. The areas also include the Zayed City, Liwa, Ghayathi, farms in the Western Region, the island's coasts and beaches.
The new five-year contracts stipulate specified technical procedures that will play a vital role in reducing waste at source, maximising recycling practices and decreasing waste transferred to landfills.
The officials did not have figures for the amount of waste being recycled at the moment. "The rate of recycling is high in developed countries where awareness campaigns have been going on for several decades. Here we have initiated such efforts recently so the rate of recycling is low. But it will go up gradually thanks to the new efforts,” Al Ka'abi said.
New technologies will be deployed on Delma Island in the Western Region to minimise waste, given its status as a coveted natural reserve of Abu Dhabi, Mubarak Al Ameri, Director of Waste Collection Projects at the centre, said. He said the transportation of waste from the island to the mainland costs Dh25,000 per day so the contractor has been asked to deploy new technology to minimise waste generation on the island.
A call centre and Database Management System to enhance quality of communication with the community will be implemented. Residents can register their complaints on Abu Dhabi Government's toll free number 800 555.
The contract's scope of work includes the collection and transfer of waste, cleaning of streets, coasts and beaches and the separation of all recyclable waste, particularly green waste for reuse in the production of compost.
The companies have also been tasked with the collection and management of construction and demolition waste. Under the agreement, contracted companies are mandated to provide the necessary bins, in addition to the vehicles and equipment, which they will have full ownership of. – Gulf News

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UAE University’s innovative recycling bin scoops prizes in Japan
posted on 05/05/2013

An innovative recycling bin at UAE University (UAEU) that smiles at users has helped to collect more bottles than a normal recycling bin — and has also shown that recycling can be fun.
The bin makes the sound of clinking coins once a polythene terephthalate (PET) bottle is placed in it and a smiley face appears on an LCD screen above it, said Dr Jose Berengueres, assistant professor at the College of Information Technology and head of the project team.
The smiling bin, placed in the IT college lobby, collected 360 bottles over four weeks, with an average weekly collection of 95 bottles, compared with just 103 bottles collected in a normal recycling bin over the same period.
"The results are encouraging and show that recycling can be a fun and rewarding experience,” he said.
The bin, developed by a team of IT students at UAEU, was recently shown in a video at a human robot interaction conference in Tokyo where it bagged two prizes, said a university spokesperson.
A short version of the video can be seen at:
"Fun rewards work better than offers of cash or other material incentives and we have proved that by using just a smile,” said Dr Berengueres.
The smiling bin took just five weeks to conceive and produce and cost approximately Dh1,500 — the cost of a computer and a sensor to detect bottles being placed inside.
Fatima Al Suwairi, an Emirati student, wrote the software code that produced the smiley face response while other students helped analyse the research findings.
The team is now testing a cheaper alternative, an Android tablet, he added.
The team is also talking to government authorities and businesses about rolling out similar devices. The UAE has one of the world's highest waste-generation rates and very little of it is recycled.
According to studies carried out in 2010, it was estimated that Abu Dhabi residents produced between 1.8kg and 2.4kg waste daily per person. If this remains the same, the Abu Dhabi Government could be spending as much as Dh22 billion a year on waste management by 2030, said Dr Berengueres. – Gulf News

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Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort and Spa introduces food waste recycling unit
posted on 11/04/2013

The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort and Spa has taken a giant step towards sustainability by recycling food waste into natural compost that can be added to the soil.
The hotel has installed a machine called the Waste Food Eater that can devour up to 600 kilograms of waste food at one go.
Sebastien Weyer, Director of Engineering, said the hotel recycles between 150 and 200kg of food generated by six restaurants daily, including the staff canteen that caters up to 250 people.
"Our staff is trained to segregate food waste. All kinds of waste food, including vegetables, meat and even bones can be processed into fertiliser by the machine. There is zero wastage of food ever since we got the machine in March. We are fast moving towards the concept of being a green hotel,” said Weyer.
The machine installed by Dubai-based Union Papers processes food waste into one-third its size by generating heat and through high-pressure mixing. "The moisture is removed from food and the extracted water is drained out through a pipe,” said Weyer. It takes 10 hours to complete a single cycle, and the end product, a dry brown soil-like powder, is currently used to fertilise the hotel's herb garden growing organic vegetables.
Marketing Manager Jonathan Hallmark said the hotel is piloting the initiative in the Starwood managed hotels in the UAE. "The machine will soon be rolled out in seven Starwood hotels in Abu Dhabi as part of our green initiative to cut down on carbon footprints.”
The natural fertiliser produced by the decomposing machine is currently being tested and graded by the Al Ain Environment and Water Laboratory. Hallmark said the hotel has plans to distribute the natural compost to local farmers and buy local produce from them for the hotel kitchen. – Gulf News/XPRESS

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