UAE-based Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), a leading national entity for development aid, has approved a $33-million concessionary loan for the development of a waste-to-energy facility in the northern emirate of Sharjah.
The facility is the flagship project of Emirates Waste to Energy Company, a joint venture between Masdar, a regional leader in renewable energy, and Bee’ah, the UAE’s leading environmental management company.
Early this year, ADFD confirmed its commitment to financing the project, the second of its kind in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region.
Due for completion by early 2021, the facility aims to help attain Sharjah’s zero-waste-to-landfill target and the UAE’s objective of diverting 75 per cent of its municipal solid waste from the landfill by 2021.
Expected to treat more than 300,000 tonne of municipal solid waste each year, or 37.5 tonne per hour, the plant will have the capacity to generate around 30 MW of energy.
This project is an important step in translating the UAE’s objectives in sustainability into reality, remarked Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, the director general of ADFD, after signing the deal with Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, the chief executive of Masdar, and Khaled Al Huraimel, the group chief executive of Bee’ah at the ADFD headquarters in Abu Dhabi.
ADFD, he stated, was committed to financing projects that align with national priorities.
"We are confident that the Sharjah waste-to-energy facility will bolster the UAE’s journey towards a renewable energy future. Moreover, ADFD is also keen on reinforcing the key pillars of the UAE national economy by supporting local companies. Not only will this project stimulate the creation of a new economic sector in the country, but it will also encourage new job opportunities in Sharjah," he noted.
Al Ramahi lauded ADFD for its important role in translating national and global sustainable development goals into reality.
The Masdar chief revealed that the project was estimated to displace almost 450,000 tonne of carbon dioxide emissions per year and save an equivalent of 45 million cu m of natural gas per year.
"The completion of this funding agreement is a key step in the development of the facility, a pioneering project which, once on stream, will make a major contribution towards achieving the UAE’s goal of producing 50 per cent of its electricity needs from clean energy sources by 2050,"remarked Al Ramahi.
"Our collaboration with ADFD and Bee’ah is further evidence of the commercial viability of advanced clean technologies here in the UAE and the wider region," said the top official.
Al Ramahi, while lauding all the partners involved in realising this groundbreaking waste-to-energy project, said Masdar was proud to invest its decade-long renewable energy experience in support of Sharjah’s commitment to sound environmental management.
Al Huraimel said: "As one of the first waste-to-energy facilities in the region, this iconic project firmly puts the UAE on a path to securing the green energy future of the nation."
"Bee’ah is pleased to have the support of nationally renowned entities like the ADFD in making this project a reality. In addition to bringing clean energy to thousands of homes, this facility constitutes the final step in the zero-waste-to-landfill strategy, creating a new paradigm for the integrated management of waste," he added