Emirates RDF breaks ground on UAQ waste-to-energy treatment plant

Project is expected to generate 300,000 tonnes of alternative fuel annually

Emirates RDF has broken ground on a new waste-to-energy treatment plant in Umm Al Quwain. The $36m plant will be delivered by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE) and the Emirates RDF Company. 50% of the cost will be undertaken by the Follow-up Committee of the Initiatives of the UAE President.

According to a statement, the project will become operational in Q3 2020 and will spread over some 400,000sqm. The plant is expected to treat some 1,500 tonnes of municipal solid waste a day and could generate 300,000 tonnes of alternative fuel annually.

The groundbreaking 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.

“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,” said Dr. Al Zeyoudi.

He added, “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.”

Al Suwaidi remarked, “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 endeavor to establish multiple similar solid waste treatment facilities across the country.”

Nico de Koning, general manager of Emirates RDF, said this cutting-edge waste management facility will be the first of its kind in the GCC region.

He stated, “Utilising 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. 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.”


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