Riyadh unveils new integrated waste management and recycling plan

Three Saudi entities sign MoU to recycle 81% of municipal solid waste and 47% of construction and demolition waste by 2035

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A landmark initiative has been launched in Riyadh that aims to improve collection systems and proper treatment of waste to protect the environment and achieve environmental sustainability by improving recycling rates. The National Waste Management Centre, the Riyadh Municipality and the Saudi Investment Recycling Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Public Investment Fund, signed a tripartite memorandum of understanding (MoU), to start integrated waste management and waste recycling activities in Riyadh.

The agreement was signed by His Excellency Eng. Abdulrahman bin Abdulmohsen Al-Fadley, the Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture, and Chairman of the board of directors of the National Waste Management Center; His Excellency Eng. Tariq bin Abdul Aziz Al Faris, Mayor of Riyadh region; and Eng. Jeroen Vincent, Chief Executive Officer of Saudi Investment Recycling Company (SIRC).

Under the MoU, the three parties will jointly work on the execution of the overall waste management strategy for Riyadh in order to achieve a set of strategic objectives for recycling in Riyadh by 2035. This notably includes the recycling of 81 percent of the 3.4 million tons of municipal solid waste produced annually and 47 percent of the approximately five million tons of construction and demolition waste generated per year. The strategy further aims for the removal and recycling of an estimated 20 million tons of construction and demolition (C&D) waste that is currently lying in vacant plots and on roadsides around the capital, according to the Saudi Environment Ministry press release.

As part of an integrated waste management system, the Saudi Investment Recycling Company will build state-of-the-art recycling facilities to recycle all types of waste. This includes the recycling of municipal waste into recyclables such as fertilizer, paper, plastics and metals. The first initiative within the framework agreement will be the recycling of C&D waste into building materials for road construction and housing projects followed by the construction of a sorting facility for municipal waste, in conjunction with the Mayor of Riyadh region project “City without bins”, which aims at the dual source-sorting of household waste in Riyadh.

The Mayor of Riyadh region recently launched an experiment to replace single bins in some residential neighborhoods, with two bins for each house. The Mayor of Riyadh region designated green bins for inorganic materials such as plastics, paper, cardboard, glass and metal cans, while the black bins were for organic waste, residues, and components of food, as per the statement.

Eng. Abdulrahman bin Abdulmohsen Al-Fadley, the Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture, and Chairman of the board of directors of the National Waste Management Center, said that the signing of the MoU comes within the framework of efforts to preserve and protect the environment, and achieve environmental sustainability, which the Ministry is working on in order to activate the national environmental strategy.

His Excellency emphasised that the Ministry of Environment, Water, and Agriculture, represented by the National Waste Management Centre, in partnership with the other governmental entities, aims to increase the rate of recycling, stimulate new techniques, and encourage more investment in the waste sector. “The agreement intends to activate the investment pathway in the waste management sector through an alliance with companies specialised in the field of waste management and treatment,” Eng. Al-Fadhley added.

“This agreement strengthens our continuous efforts to improve the system of work in the waste management sector and upgrade the services provided to Riyadh residents in accordance with the best international standards,” said His Excellency Eng. Tariq bin Abdul Aziz Al-Faris, Mayor of Riyadh region. “The agreement, in fact, reflects the keenness of the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs and the guidance of His Excellency Dr. Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qasabi on the partnership and regular collaboration with various entities in the public and private sectors in the field of waste management.”

Eng. Jeroen Vincent, Chief Executive Officer of Saudi Investment Recycling Company, said, “We are proud and honored to be part of this agreement that will enable our role as waste management sector development company by establishing state-of-the-art recycling facilities. This is a great opportunity for the city of Riyadh and the local industry. Our initiative will not only contribute to a cleaner city, but will also unlock a large volume of materials for the paper, plastic and metals industry.”