UAE waste to increase by over 27% by 2017
Dubai - Report released by Eco-Waste Conference as much as 29 million tonnes of rubbish will likely be generated by 2017.
The amount of waste generated by the UAE will increase by from 6.6 million tonnes to 8.4 million tonnes by 2017, a recently-released report has said.
The report, which was released at the Eco-Waste Conference hosted by Masdar, the Abu Dhabi sustainable energy company, said that as much as 29 million tonnes of rubbish will likely be generated by then.
"These are alarming statistics and could only be tackled by raising awareness among the consumers," said Sameera Fernandes, head of corporate affairs at Al Ghurair Investment. "Government's statistics show that 13 million tonnes of waste were collected in Abu Dhabi in 2012, up from 9.6 million tonnes in 2009. Dubai, in comparison, has reduced from 21.8 million tonnes collected in 2009 to 9.6 million tonnes in 2012."
According to statistics, in Dubai, food waste accounts for 55 per cent of all waste generated in the emirate. Each Ramadan, for example, Dubai disposes of 1,850 tonnes of food - which equates to about one kilogramme per resident.
At present, Dubai authorities estimate that the city recycles 25 per cent of its waste, which it hopes to increase to 75 per cent by 2021.
Fernandes said that public-private partnerships play a key role in achieving this aim.
"Perhaps the municipality's best example of this partnership is the 'My City, My Environment' campaign, which expanded its scope in May," she said. "The programme, which now serves 15 communities, has seen private companies tender contracts to provide and manage segregated rubbish bins for homes across Dubai."
Additionally, Al Ghurair Investment has been conducting a series of "edutainment" events directed at the public to increase their knowledge of proper waste management.
On Thursday and Friday, for example, Al Ghurair and Oasis Mall hosted an "Act to Sustain" campaign, which included a "recycling game" designed to teach participants how to separate recyclable and non-recyclable waste into different bins.
Additionally, there was a rapid-fire quiz on waste management topics, and younger children were invited to participate in a "colouring zone" to introduce them to recycling techniques.
The event at Oasis Mall was part of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce "Sustainability Week 2015", which marked the chamber's 50th anniversary.
"We are always looking to directly engage the community in anti-waste measures. In particular we need to get the sustainability message across to children and families - and edutainment activities provide a great means of communicating a serious topic in a fun way," Fernandes said.