With climate change being front and centre in the news a few weeks ago thanks to COP 26, the need for a sustainable everything and the need for a circular economy could not become more pressing. In January 2021, under the UAE Circular Economy Policy, the UAE Cabinet approved the establishment of the UAE Circular Economy Council, chaired by the Minister of Climate Change and Environment, with members representing federal and local authorities and the private sector.
Three clear opportunities emerged in the UAE that will become the driving force towards achieving environmental goals that will be wholly backed by the leadership of the country.
High volume of plastic consumption and the need to divert the resulting waste from landfills has long been an issue that the government has been aiming to tackle. Underpinned by the UAE’s goal to achieve low environmental impact, the need for clean tech solutions has been on the rise. Companies that are able to support this goal with an innovative edge in technology and transferable skills are finding that the government is offering grants, funds and even opportunities to run pilot programs to be able to follow through with the policies developed by the council.
Construction and Demolition (C&D) Waste
Rapid development of real estate market and construction of associated infrastructure have been generating significant volumes of C&D waste. Research suggests that this waste could potentially be reused and recycled on an average of up to 95%. With developers constantly looking for economical building materials, there has been a rise in demand for construction materials that could be easily and inexpensively substituted with recycled secondary material. Therefore, new construction material from recycled aggregates has also garnered much interest in the UAE.
The UAE has the dubious distinction of the highest per capita usage of beverage cans in the region. Converting scrap aluminum into valuable products require less energy and is considered more cost efficient than creating new aluminum and therefore considered the ‘poster child’ of the circular economy approach. The government both at the Federal level and Emirate level have been mandated to implement zero landfill solutions that will limit illegal dumping and burning. As a result, highly subsidised land and infrastructure is offered to entities that have the expertise to set up factories that in turn will lead to creating jobs and revenue for the local community.
If you are a UK company operating within this area and have an interesting technology that could support the government to achieve its goals and have plans to set up a base in the UAE to make the most of these opportunities, please reach out to us to know more.
About the author:
Business Operations Manager
LinkedIn: Vineetha Sony