Managing Waste at Emaar

The Emaar portfolio includes Hospitality, Entertainment, Property, Retail, Communities and Cooling Districts – each having distinctive operational models, outputs and objectives. However, the one thing all these facilities have in common is the necessity for waste management solutions that are operationally efficient and cost-effective whilst simultaneously maximising the diversion of their waste away from landfill and meeting compliance requirements.

One of the greatest challenges in conserving our environment today is to ‘close the loop' on resource reuse. Emaar Corporate Facilities Management (FM), therefore, has developed and implemented an Integrated Solid Waste Management System (ISWMS) with the aim to serve as a guideline that will enable the Emaar FM team and the service providers in implementing waste management processes across different Emaar facilities.

The main objectives of implementing these processes are as follow:

  • Generating comprehensive information on quantity and type of recyclable and recoverable materials to prioritise the recovery opportunities
  • Develop a baseline for continued long-term measurement of system performance
  • Generate information on the different sub-streams of waste to design, implement and monitor an effective and efficient system for collection, transportation, recycling, treatment, recovery and disposal of various streams of solid waste
  • Provide comparison of waste composition and waste diversion accomplishments for continuous improvements in integrated solid waste management
  • Maximise waste diversion by promoting prevention, reduction, reuse and recycling of waste
  • Reduce waste disposal to landfill
  • Increase consumer awareness of waste minimisation issues
  • Encourage waste to energy options
  • Encourage the establishments of Material Recovery Facilities (MRFs)

By analysing the waste stream – quantities and characteristics of waste generated – specific to the facilities, a tailor-made waste management plan that manages onsite waste generation can be develop for every business unit. 

This customised waste management plan includes the following:

  • Environmental and financial reporting
  • Tailored onsite education
  • Unique resource recovery and recycling initiatives
  • Selection of correct equipment
  • Improved safety outcomes and innovations

Case study

The Dubai Mall – the world’s largest and most visited retail and entertainment destination, welcomed more than 85 million visitors in 2016. One of the biggest demands for The Dubai Mall Facilities Management (FM) team today is to manage the waste generated through over 1,200 retailers and more than 200 F&B outlets.

In 2015, 90 per cent of solid waste was transported to the landfill. Using correct selected onsite equipment, colour-coded bin systems, education programmes for all stakeholders (from Emaar Malls Management team, to the cleaning crew, the retailer and including mall costumers), we improved recycling volume, reduced waste to landfill and managed our carbon footprint. Through segregation, sorting the waste at the source and selecting qualified waste management partners, The Dubai Mall recovered over 500 megatonnes of recyclables in September 2017 – 40 per cent from general waste – which generated 34 megatonnes of compost that was then utilised by Emaar’s Landscaping Department. The Dubai Mall today has one of the highest diversion rates, not just in Dubai but in the MENA region.

Currently, the mall is running a new innovative project – Smart Waste Management (SWM). This will enable the waste management team to easily identify the different types and quantities of waste generated from each retail and F&B outlet and provide on-time reports. This data then can be used to identify specific training needs. A retail or restaurant manager can identify wastage of resources and materials, may change the kitchen management style, order of food, or other processes to reduce excess sources of waste.

(The Author, Andrea Deutschbein is the Director, SFM, The Dubai Mall)










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