Abu Dhabi-UAE: Abu Dhabi Waste Management Center (Tadweer) registered remarkable achievements in 2020 despite the unprecedented challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic to its operations. Tadweer’s relentless efforts to improve the performance of its sectors and services helped the Center successfully navigate the fallout of the pandemic and achieve the best results in protecting public health and ensuring environmental sustainability.
Tadweer’s achievements covered the full spectrum of its operational sectors, including pest control, waste collection and transportation, projects and facilities management, and environmental awareness and education. In parallel, the Center made significant contribution to the national disinfection program throughout its run, helping the emirate protect the health and safety of Abu Dhabi community and contain the pandemic effectively.
Pest Control Services
The inspection and monitoring teams of the Pest Control Projects Department at Tadweer stepped up efforts to contain mosquito and fly proliferation across Abu Dhabi Emirate.
As part of its Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach, the Center implemented an integrated mosquito control program that incorporates the latest practices to effectively control pests and ensure that their breeding rates remain under permissible levels.
Comprising four stages, the approach includes several effective control strategies and sustainable solutions. In the first stage, the Center surveys potential breeding sites, followed by data classification and analysis. After that, it takes effective control measures, and store the data in an electronic database.
Tadweer teams use technology-enabled mosquito traps linked to an electronic system to record and monitor mosquito activity every 15 minutes and their count is sent to the database. Throughout the control drive, integrated techniques are used to ensure that mosquito and fly proliferation is effectively controlled.
Through the effective use of insect traps in the monitoring and control operations, a total of 2,073,453 mosquitoes, 404,377 large insects, and 2,942,621 small insects were monitored.
Tadweer also undertook various measures to eliminate mosquito breeding sites in various regions of Abu Dhabi through constantly surveying and monitoring potential breeding sites in farms and construction and residential project sites. It also collaborated with Abu Dhabi International Airport to monitor breeding sites of mosquitoes that transmit diseases and carried out several awareness programs through various print, visual, audio, and social media platforms.
In 2020, Tadweer eliminated 60% of the pest habitats in various regions of the emirate, and reduced the use of pesticides by 20% compared to 2019 owing to the use of smart traps.
Furthermore, the proliferation of rodents in residential areas was reduced from 3.3% in 2019 to 2.2% in 2020. Likewise, the infestation of American cockroach decreased to 1.9% in 2020 from 2% in the previous year, while rodent infestation in farms saw a sharp decline from 14.6% in 2019 to 3.8% in 2020.
Tadweer also ran 10 public awareness programs last year to highlight the risks associated with pest infestations and ways to prevent them. It also ensured the compliance of 88% of developers with its waste management and pest control circular.
The pest control teams at Tadweer operate in various geographical sectors across Abu Dhabi including Abu Dhabi Island (east and west), Abu Dhabi City, Yas Island, Al Ain City (the northern and southern regions), and Al Dhafra Region.
These specialized teams provide best-in-class pest control services that allow the emirate to ensure efficient control over the potential breeding sites such as stagnant water in swamps, permanent and seasonal water bodies, irrigation ponds and septic tanks in farms, sewerage drains, and unused fountains and swimming pools in homes and gardens.
The Center also received 74,484 pest control requests from the public and detected 5,303,205 infested sites.
Waste Collection and Transportation Services
In addition to seven operational contracts, Tadweer awarded last year contracts worth AED2.4 billion to carry out waste collection and transportation services in a total area covering 67,340 km.
It also deployed a team comprising 66 inspectors and 7,600 workers equipped with 1,445 vehicles and 162,000 bins.
Last year, Tadweer unloaded containers carrying municipal solid waste 4,212,000 times posting an average annual increase of 3.2%. The Center also handled 88,220 tons of waste every month using 162,000 containers, 215 equipment and an 805-strong workforce.
Tadweer also collected 6,820 tons of bulky waste from Abu Dhabi region last year, representing a change of 25.3%. This included 3,960 tons of bulky waste from Abu Dhabi region, 2,410 tons from Al Ain region, and 450 tons from Al Dhafra region.
Meanwhile, the average annual amount of the green waste transported and collected from across the emirate in 2020 stood at 8,925 tons, representing an annual change of 25.25%. This includes 2,070 tons from Abu Dhabi region, 2,125 tons from Al Ain region, and 4,740 tons from Al Dhafra region.
Project and Facilities Management Achievements
Tadweer’s Projects and Facilities Management Department has come a long way in implementing its strategic plans for 2020-2021 in line with the Center’s Waste Management Master Plan 2040.
These achievements articulate Tadweer’s efforts to develop an advanced waste management infrastructure to attract investments through opening three new facilities to treat medical and hazardous waste.
The Center launched a new facility for the treatment of fallen stock in Abu Dhabi city according to the highest international and local standards. The facility is aligned with Abu Dhabi’s objective of ensuring the safe and proper disposal of all types of waste. The center also accorded high importance to the implementation of strategic projects in Al Dhafra region. It opened a demolition and construction waste recycling facility in Ghayathi and commenced the operation of a tire recycling facility at Madinat Zayed and Ghayathi landfills.
As part of its response to the Covid-19 pandemic, Tadweer deployed three mobile facilities in a record time, contributing to the successful containment of the pandemic in the Emirate. Installed and operated within 48 hours, these facilities supported the key Covid-19 screening and quarantine centers in Abu Dhabi in the safe disposal of medical and hazardous waste.
The center also obtained approval for 4 organic fertilizer products from the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, and set up a new solar energy unit at Al Dhafra plant.
Furthermore, it improved the monitoring measures and efficiency of its facilities, and actively participated in the hazardous materials team formed by the Executive Council.
The department is to launch two of its most important strategic projects in the next few months, including the Waste-to-Energy (WTE) project and the MRF & RDF project.
Achievements of the Licensing, Tariff and Customer Service Department
The Licensing, Tariff and Customer Service Department at Tadweer continued its achievement in 2020. Notable among them are the integration of its services with the digital identity, integration with the Unified Services Platform (TAMM) and imposition of administrative penalties in case of repeated violations. The department also developed an initiative to classify companies providing environmental service, and an initiative to develop a new waste reduction system.
The department also created a comprehensive technical guide for hazardous waste management, and rolled out a smart application. In addition, it made significant improvements to the licensing and tariff system, and announced new monitoring measures for waste generated by construction and demolition activities through the control and monitoring room.
It also implemented emergency work procedures in response to the disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic to ensure business continuity. They included the activation of a rapid communication channel through the WhatsApp during the closure of its branches and service centers.
Public Awareness Drive
Tadweer’s awareness activities and campaigns in 2020 delivered significant results in promoting environmental awareness across Abu Dhabi Emirate despite the unprecedented challenges posed by COVID-19 pandemic to its operations.
In 2020, the Center hosted and participated in nearly 110 awareness events and campaigns across Abu Dhabi’s three regions, and actively supported several sub-campaigns in schools, private and public organizations, and commercial areas. This allowed Tadweer to carry its message to over 254,430 people from various segments of society including Emiratis and residents from various nationalities.
Tadweer’s awareness drive during major events such as the Liwa Date Festival allowed the Center to deliver its awareness messages to more than 1,500 people who participated in various activities held as part of the festival.
Key Achievements of Environment, Health and Safety Department
As a key priority in Tadweer’s response to Covid-19 pandemic, the Environment, Health and Safety Department at the Center adopted a comprehensive plan to create a safe environment for all workers within the Waste Sector during its’ normal operations, emergencies and the crisis which we face currently in Covid – 19 pandamic, and developed programs that ensured the health and safety of all workers contracted with Tadweer.
The department delivered meaningful KPIs in terms of strategic and operational objectives for environment, health, safety and business continuity. Between the first and fourth quarters of 2020, the department achieved 90% of its overall KPI targets.
In terms of business continuity, the department redeveloped its business continuity system in line with the national and international standards, achieving 81% compliance by end of 2020, up from 41% in 2019. The department is continuing its efforts this year towards reaching 100 percent compliance. The business continuity system has significantly contributed to Tadweer’s effective response to the emergency situation caused by the pandemic.
Tadweer’s Outstanding Contribution to National Disinfection Program
Tadweer made significant contribution to the national disinfection program in Abu Dhabi by implementing an effective action plan that achieved its objective of preventing the spread of the pandemic in Abu Dhabi.
Ever since the Covid-19 outbreak began, Tadweer’s field and administrative teams worked around the clock to ensure optimal results from the Center’s participation in the program, while protecting the health and safety of Abu Dhabi community from all adverse effects of the pandemic.
To support the program, the Center deployed a 972 strong task force of disinfection specialists, engineers, supervisors, technicians, cleaners and administrative staff. Working for ten hours a day, the team completed a total of 1.8 million hours over the course of 227 days till 8 November, 2020.
The achievements made by Tadweer in 2020 articulate its relentless efforts to implement the directives of the wise leadership that places public health and well-being above all other considerations and sees investment in human capital as the key driver of the country’s prosperity.
His Excellency Falah Mohamed Al Ahbabi, Chairman of Tadweer, said: “We are proud of the achievements Tadweer accomplished over the past year through adopting a well-rounded strategy to fulfil its objectives of supporting Abu Dhabi’s sustainable development.
“Tadweer’s efforts and initiatives are aligned with Abu Dhabi Government’s priority to improve the quality of life in both urban and rural areas, and preserve the Emirate’s environment for the current and future generations in collaboration with its strategic partners.
“Tadweer is committed to turning waste into a valuable economic resource waste by leveraging the latest technologies in sustainable waste management to support the government’s vision of building a sustainable economy.
“Tadweer’s achievements have helped Abu Dhabi enhance its position at the forefront of countries with an integrated waste management system. Therefore, we look forward to continuing this momentum to drive greater results for the Emirate in the years to come,” Al Ahbabi added.
His Excellency Dr Salem Al Kaabi, Director General of Tadweer said: “The achievements Tadweer made over the past year can be attributed to the Center’s strategic vision to develop an integrated system to effectively manage different types of waste.”
“In waste projects and facilities management, our key achievements include the opening of the environmentally friendly waste treatment complex named ‘Eco Park’, the launch of new medical and hazardous waste treatment facilities in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Al Dhafra, and finalizing the design of Al Dhafra landfill road and main gate. We also completed the study and tender document preparation for the resource recovery and the waste to fuel facilities and incorporated quality requirements in new contracts.
“In pest control sector, Tadweer eliminated 60% of pest breeding sites across the emirate, and achieved a 20% decrease in pesticide consumption compared to 2019 as a result of the use of smart traps. Furthermore, we carried out 10 awareness programs to educate the public about the dangers of pests and how to prevent them.
“In 2020, Tadweer also commenced the operation of our organic waste composting unit, and rolled out four new civic amenities for recyclable waste, and 40 new underground containers across various areas of Abu Dhabi. We also conducted awareness drives at 225 residential complexes on the proper use of these facilities, and launched innovative trash bins to attract children.
“As part of our continued efforts to facilitate knowledge exchange with universities, Tadweer conducted specialized studies in waste management sector, and participated in the initiatives of International Solid Waste Management Association (ISWA), an association that aims to promote and develop solid waste management sector across the globe.
“Going forward, we aim to continue our achievements through offering pioneering solutions and services to cater to the evolving requirements of integrated waste management sector and ensure the highest possible standard of living for Abu Dhabi community. This supports the objectives of Abu Dhabi Environmental Vision 2030 in creating a safe and healthy environment to all,” Al Kaabi added.