A municipality worker cleaning the street at Bur Dubai, disposing garbage bags filled with plastic bottles and tins. - File photo
Dubai - The project aims at converting the city's solid waste into a source of energy by using AI.
The Dubai Municipality (DM) has developed its 'Wasteniser' project as its proposal for the Dubai 10X Initiative, a venture overseen by the Dubai Future Foundation (DFF).
The project aims at converting the city's solid waste into a source of energy by using artificial intelligence (AI) to address current and future waste-related challenges and maintain sustainability.
Dawood Abdul Rahman Abdullah Al Hajiri, director-general of Dubai Municipality, said: "We must face the challenges and strive to meet the project's strategic goals, which seek to make Dubai the first and only city in the world to use artificial intelligence in transporting and processing waste to generate clean and sustainable energy."
"The municipality has set an action plan to implement the project immediately after the launch; the plan was titled 'The Vision of the Future City, Today'," Al Hajiri added.
"To that end, we formed a task force consisting of young, passionate and driven Emiratis to carry out this initiative, and firmly establish the global leadership of the DM. We are working to create an ecosystem that embraces change and a smart, flexible environment that engages both the public and private sectors, as well as the general public, to implement the services of the future."
Plan includes world's largest energy terminalThe project includes building the world's largest energy terminal in terms of production capacity and thermal conversion efficiency. This, in turn, contributes to the Dubai Integrated Waste Management Master Plan, which seeks to steer 100 per cent of the city's waste away from landfills by the year 2030.
The project includes carefully analysing the statistics pertaining to waste and the high costs of collection and treatment, in addition to the environmental disadvantages of harmful emissions from Dubai's landfills. It increases the municipality's efficiency by reducing operational costs, eliminates the environmental footprint of buried waste and prevents loss of land to landfills.
As it stands, the emirate of Dubai produces 3.5 million tonnes of waste annually, uses 7,560 square metres of land as landfills, deploys 3,850 garbage collection vehicles to all its districts, all at a daily operating cost of Dh2.3 million.
Once implemented, the Wastenizer system will produce 17,500 tonnes of good ash for the production of green concrete. The municipality is working in partnership with local and international companies specialising in AI, infrastructure, and waste-to-energy, transportation, in addition to major real estate and property developers, in order to execute the ambitious project.
Implementation began with research and development in the fourth quarter of 2017, before moving on to forging strategic agreements with potential partners from the private sector in Q1 2018. The pilot phase of the project has been scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2018, with the system entering full implementation in several regions of the emirate just before the opening of Expo 2020.
Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Chairman of Dubai Executive Council and Chairman of DFF's Board of Trustees, launched the bold plan, among several avant-garde proposals for Dubai 10X at the 6th World Government Summit, held in Dubai in February. Sheikh Hamdan approved 26 projects presented by 24 government entities. The shortlisted projects were evaluated by a panel of experts out of a total of more than 160 ideas submitted by 36 parties in less than 365 days.
Wasteniser to produce green concreteOnce implemented, the Wastenizer system will produce 17,500 tonnes of good ash for the production of green concrete. The initiative consists of developing a world-first, decentralised waste-treatment platform for buildings and residential districts in Dubai.
The system uses technology developed by the Dubai Municipality to treat all types of solid waste after sorting them using AI and smart technologies. The decentralised units raise the temperature of the waste resulting in the breakdown of its chemical components, producing clean electrical energy that will be exported to the local electricity grid.
KT Nano EditEyeing the future
Dubai is not just concentrating on the now, but has its eyes firmly set on the future. There is a plan to ensure a sustainable, green and technologically driven future through innovation and use of artificial intelligence. The change is coming one sector at a time and the results will be soon for all of us to see. More green power to the future of Dubai.