This EU funded project is a pioneering step in green economy; all stakeholders are requested to become part of the necessary change
Irbid, November 26, 2019- The first state-of-the-art solid waste recycling facility in Irbid Governorate marked its grand opening by hosting a ribbon cutting ceremony under the patronage of H.E Governor of Irbid, Radwan Otoum, in Truck City. The ceremony was also attended by the European Union Ambassador to Jordan, H.E Maria Hadjitheodosiou, and Mayor of Greater Irbid Municipality, H.E Hussein Bani Hani.
The recycling facility was built under the framework of the E4 project "E4 Enhancing Employment Opportunities in Jordan Energy and Environment Sectors". With a value of 3.34 million Euros, the E4 project was funded by the EU with support from “Fondazione Prince Albert II of Monaco” and “Fondazione Terzo Pilastro”. The implementing partner is “Istituto per la Cooperazione Universitaria” in partnership with Greater Irbid Municipality, “The Jordanian European Project for Environmental Solutions”, “University of Brescia” and “Yarmouk Water Company”.
"This project is an example of a € 3 Million EU specific support to Solid Waste recycling, within a circular economy vision, and a vision to enhance public private partnerships in the sector, that has a business potential.
I hope that the Municipality of Greater Irbid will continue this difficult but rewarding path towards recycling," H.E Ms Maria HADJITHEODOSIOU, EU Ambassador to Jordan, said.
During the ceremony, an overview of the facility was provided by project manager Eng. Dora Biondani. Jordan, which currently has an unprecedented high production of daily waste, is facing a challenging situation. The constructing of this pilot project is a very much needed first step towards recycling. The facility is designed to process up to 8 tons/day of paper and newspaper waste and 12 tons/day of plastic waste. Plastic waste will become granulate to be introduced again in the production process, while paper waste will become a new product to improve insulation in the construction sector. This new insulation product is estimated to have high potential in Jordan, as often old construction practices lack proper insulation.
Additionally, the facility was designed to be eco-friendly; 100 kW of Photovoltaic Panel will help reduce operational costs, while a wastewater treatment unit will provide the opportunity to reuse the same water and reduce the environmental impact of the process.
The facility, owned by the Greater Irbid Municipality, will be operated by “The Jordanian European Project for Environmental Solution” under an Operational Agreement.
The challenges in the waste management sector are many. A panel discussion during the inauguration event shed light on the perspective of most stakeholders in the waste management sector. The Panel was represented by Eng. Reham Jamal from the Greater Irbid Municipality, Dr. Mustafa Jaar from the private sector, Ms. Amal Madanat from the civil society, as well as the Ministry of Environment and sector expert Eng. Silvia Gibellini. The extreme impact of waste reflects the high interest in the sector, which in turn necessitates a collaborative effort to achieve the desired improvements.
Circular Economy in waste management has the potential not only to improve the market, but also to increase job opportunities; 41 workers were hired to operate the facility and perform waste collection. The next proposed step is increasing awareness and improving waste collection at household level. Under the framework of the E4 project, 20 schools in Irbid have benefitted from awareness campaigns and students demonstrated interest and understanding of the urgency to start good practices to create the necessary change.
With continuous support from international donors, Jordan has been witnessing improvement in the waste management sector, and now is the time to accelerate the process by becoming part of the change.
For more details:
Eng. Dora Biondani