Bahrain to work ‘towards zero waste’
Manama, November 15, 2011
Up to 75 per cent of Bahrain’s domestic waste can be recycled, a top environmentalist said yesterday.
However, the efficiency of recycling depends largely on the community's participation, said United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation International Institute for Hydraulic and Environmental Engineering associate professor, Maarten Siebel.
"Households should implement a good waste separation system for recycling, by separating waste into paper and cardboard, glass, packaging materials, organic waste and residual waste," said Prof Siebel. "Consumers can also compost their organic waste and the soil produced can be used or sold."
If consumers don't readily participate in recycling, then an alternative could be to employ staff to separate the waste at the disposal site, Prof Siebel added. He said waste also needed to be minimised at the production phase by recycling and reusing materials.
"How useful is recycling? For example, it takes less energy and waste to recycle paper than to produce it in the first place, so it has a cost saving," said Prof Siebel. "The Pollution Prevention Pays Programme is another example which worldwide resulted in billions of savings. We can make our products smarter, less toxic and more efficient. We can also avoid a huge amount of waste just by re-thinking our choices, for example by buying bamboo instead of oak."
Prof Siebel was speaking at the First Bahrain Waste Management Forum and Exhibition, which concludes at the Gulf Hotel's Gulf Convention Centre today (November 15).
The three-day event, under the theme Towards Zero Waste, is organised by Bahrain Polytechnic, under the patronage of Municipal and Urban Affairs Minister Dr Juma Al Ka'abi. It is supported by United Nations Environmental Programme and the Public Commission for Protection of Marine Resources, Environment and Wildlife, with Tamkeen as strategic partner.
The conference has brought together international experts to discuss waste management theories, state-of-the-art technologies, and latest trends covering various environmental aspects and offers practical solutions to better manage waste materials. The exhibition provides a platform for latest set of solutions to the community. Exhibitors display and demonstrate their products, services as well as cutting-edge waste management technology and global trends.
It is open today, from 8am to 4pm, to the public free of charge. Key sponsors include CNIM, National Oil and Gas Authority, Bapco, Banagas, GPIC, Gulf City Cleaning Company, Sphinx Services, Bahrain Financial Harbour Holding Company, Alba and Ithmaar Bank.
Gulf Air is the official carrier, Zain Bahrain official telecommunications sponsor and Intermarkets Bahrain marketing sponsor. – TradeArabia News Service