Emirates RDF, a joint venture between UAE-based contractors Besix and TG Eco Holding and Finland-based Griffin Refineries, has broken ground on a major waste-to-energy treatment plant in the northern emirate of Umm Al Quwain.
The plant, being built at an investment of Dh132 million ($36 million), will be jointly executed by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE) and the Emirates RDF Company, with 50 per cent of the cost supported by the Follow-up Committee of the Initiatives of the UAE President.
The project will come up over a 400,000-sq-m area and once operational in Q3 next year, the waste-to-energy plant is set to treat some 1,500 tonnes of municipal solid waste a day, thus generating 300,000 tonnes of alternative fuel annually, said the statement from Emirates RDF.
The ground-breaking ceremony was attended by Sheikh Rashid bin Saud bin Rashid Al Mualla, Crown Prince of Umm Al Quwain and Chairman of the Umm Al Quwain Executive Council, Sheikh Ali bin Saud Al Mualla, Chairman of Umm Al Quwain Municipality, Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, and Jaber Mohammed Ghanem Al Suwaidi, Director General of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Court.
Addressing the gathering, Dr Al Zeyoudi said: "Integrated waste management projects are a key component of our efforts to support sustainable waste management in line with the objectives of the UAE Vision 2021 that seeks to achieve sustainable development across all sectors."
"The waste-to-energy facility in Umm Al Quwain is a prime example of how we are managing the rising volume of waste – a direct result of rapid urbanization, the surge in population and economic growth, as well as changes in the production and consumption patterns," he noted.
“Once complete, the facility will process solid municipal waste generated in Ajman and Umm Al Quwain to produce energy to power cement plants that usually rely on charcoal for their operations,” he added.
Al Suwaidi said: "Environmental protection and sustainability are core priorities for the committee, whose ultimate mission is to strike a balance between economic growth and development to provide our people across the UAE with a high quality of life, integrated infrastructure, and top-notch services."
"In line with this mission, we endeavour to establish multiple similar solid waste treatment facilities across the country," he stated.
Nico de Koning, the general manager of Emirates RDF, said this cutting-edge waste management facility will be the first of its kind in the GCC region.
"Utilizing advanced technologies, the facility will have two parallel operation lines – one to receive non-recyclable waste from waste segregation units, turn it into alternative fuel, and transport this fuel to cement factories, while the second receives recyclable waste from segregation units and conveys it to recycling companies," noted de Koning.
"It is also encouraging to see many of our future clients, the representatives of cement plants in the country, joining us today to show their support for this innovative project. In September 2020, the high-quality Refuse Derived Fuel from this plant will be available to our first customers," he added.