France’s Veolia teams up with Masdar and Beeah to operate Sharjah waste-to-energy plant

The plant will enable the emirate to increase its current landfill diversion rate to 100%

Trucks drive in and out of the Beeah waste management company in Sharjah. AFP
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French utility company Veolia will be part of a joint venture operating the Sharjah Waste to Energy plant, the company said on Monday.

The region's first waste-to-energy plant, processing up to 300,000 tonnes of waste every year from landfills, was set up by Emirates Waste to Energy, a joint venture between Sharjah environmental management company Beeah and Abu Dhabi renewable energy company Masdar.

First announced in 2018, the plant will enable Sharjah to increase its landfill diversion rate from 76 per cent currently to 100 per cent.

“As part of our efforts to promote ecological transformation, Veolia is dedicated to diverting domestic waste away from landfill and to supporting the UAE’s push for green energy,” said Pascal Grante, chief executive of Veolia Near and Middle East, said in a statement.

“This project helps achieve both goals, while being aligned with the UAE’s ambitious environmental vision.”

The plant will displace nearly 450,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions, advancing the UAE’s initiative to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.

The UAE's net-zero strategy involves Dh600 billion ($163 billion) being invested in clean and renewable energy sources in the next three decades across the country.

Earlier this year, Abu Dhabi also revealed its zero-waste proposal under which it aims to ensure that no waste is sent to landfill after 2071.

Veolia will utilise its “vast” expertise in the energy recovery from waste industry to ensure that the plant is run in accordance with international best practices, the company said.

The joint venture will operate and maintain the plant for a period of 25 years, it added.

“Combining Veolia’s proven track record in ecological solutions with Masdar’s deep expertise in clean energy and Beeah’s experience in waste management, we will work together to ensure the smooth operation and maintenance of the facility,” Mohamed Al Ramahi, chief executive of Masdar, said.

Beeah Group has operations spanning waste collection and city cleaning services, waste processing and materials recovery, as well as renewable power energy.

It also has units focused on environmental consulting, research and innovation services, future technology and digital ventures, and green mobility and self-driving transport.

The global waste-to-energy market, which was valued at $31 billion in 2019, is expected to grow 7.4 per cent annually from 2020 to 2027, according to Grand View Research.

In September, Beeah Group joined forces with Egypt's Green Planet to provide city cleaning services for Egyptian resort city Sharm El Sheikh, which hosted the Cop27 climate change conference last month.

Earlier this year, Emirates Water and Electricity Company and the Abu Dhabi Waste Management Centre (Tadweer) issued a request for proposals for a new greenfield waste-to-energy independent power project being developed in the emirate.

The new plant, to be located near the existing Al Dhafra landfill in Abu Dhabi, will have an expected processing capacity of 900,000 tonnes of waste per year.

It will generate enough electricity to power up to 52,500 households, making it one of the largest facilities of its kind in the region. The plant is also expected to reduce carbon dioxide equivalent emissions by up to 1.1 million tonnes a year.

Updated: December 05, 2022, 2:54 PM