Waste-to-energy is the process of generating energy in the form of electricity or heat from the primary treatment of waste.
Masdar, Abu Dhabi's renewable energy company, had signed a strategic partnership agreement with Bee'ah to develop the UAE's waste-to-energy (WtE) sector. This partnership will help contribute to the UAE Government's Vision 2021 which targets, among other goals, diverting waste from landfills by 75 per cent by 2021.
In Abu Dhabi
A 100 MW facility, one of the world's largest, is under development in Abu Dhabi by Abu Dhabi National Energy Company PJSC (Taqa), in coordination with Abu Dhabi Waste Management Center (Tadweer).
The plant was scheduled to be up and running by 2017, generating enough power for 20,000 households in Abu Dhabi as well as cutting greenhouse gases. It is expected to reduce CO2 emissions by more than one million ton per year.
The project will be set near the Mussafah Sea Port, and it will be one of the biggest waste-to-energy facilities in the world, stretching across an area of 100,000 square metres.
By the second quarter of 2020, Dubai will have the largest plant in the Middle East to convert waste-to-energy. The plant will be located in Al Warsan 2 and will be built at a cost of AED 2 billion.
The project is in line with Dubai Municipality's vision to make Dubai the most sustainable and smart city by 2021, which will in turn achieve National Agenda's objectives for a 75 per cent reduction in the number of landfills by 2021.
This will provide more land plots that are currently being used to store waste, in addition to protecting the environment from methane emitted by landfills.
The plant will begin its operations by the second quarter of 2020, and that it will be able to process 2,000 metric tonnes every day during the first phase of operations, producing 60 megawatts of energy.
Dubai Municipality, in co-ordination with the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy and Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, conducts studies to achieve the strategy of Dubai for Clean Energy, to produce 7 per cent of Dubai's total energy from clean energy sources by 2020.
The emirate of Sharjah set up a municipal waste management company Bee'ah (the Arabic word for environment) in 2007 in the form of a public-private partnership. In October 2011, Sharjah announced an ambitious plan for 100 per cent landfill diversion by 2015.
To attain this goal, Bee'ah developed a state-of-the-art waste management centre to process and recycle waste. In 2012, the company introduced two-stream waste collection and a new tipping fee structure to incentivise waste reduction and to closely regulate landfill contents. Improved blue and green coloured odour-proof bins have been deployed across the emirate.
In addition, Sharjah is constructing a Waste-to-Energy (WtE) plant in in Sajja area that will eventually convert 400,000 tonnes of waste per year into 80 megawatts (MW) of electricity.
The project will convert 99 per cent of organic waste into energy. After using some of the generated power for the plant's own needs, the electricity will be exported to Sharjah.
In Ras Al Khaimah
The Energy from Waste Program of the RAK Energy Efficiency and Renewables Strategy 2040 integrates seamlessly into the broader waste management strategy of Ras Al Khaimah. It focuses on promoting energy outcomes for the available waste, targeting at least 2% of the primary energy demand of Ras Al Khaimah to be fulfilled from waste by 2040.
The Energy from Waste Program is planned in two phases:
1) An initial phase of studies and pilots (2018 – 2020), when various diversion options and energy outcomes are explored for different waste streams and the best options are selected
2) A subsequent phase of implementation (2021 onwards), when the waste treatment options selected in the first phase are implemented.