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Thursday, February 25, 2021

Qatar entities go green as country embraces Sustainability Week

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Qatar entities go green in line with Qatar’s Sustainability Week 2020.

In celebration of this year’s Sustainability Week, entities in Qatar are leaning towards more environmentally friendly initiatives. 

Qatar Foundation (QF) upped its efforts to contribute to a cleaner environment this week by installing designated bins across Education City to encourage the community to recycle electronics in a more eco-friendly manner.

“E-waste is a growing global problem, and 2019 set a record for the most amount of e-waste generated worldwide. This is a huge concern, as electronics can contain hazardous materials, and – if not discarded correctly – can contaminate water sources and damage the environment,” Aisha Ghani, Environment Specialist, Health, Safety, Security & Environment Directorate at QF said. 

The foundation called on the community to utilise the new bins to drop off old and used electronics at designated collection points in Education City. 

Read also: Five easy ways to become more sustainable in your daily life

Desktop computers, laptops, monitors, printer and copier toners, cartridges, keyboards, televisions, scanners, audio-video equipment, mobiles, telephones, and microwaves can all be recycled. E-waste items that cannot be recycled in QF include air conditioners, refrigerators, washing machines, and fluorescent lamps, the foundation said.

Currently, there are three collection points, including in Multaqa (Education City Student Centre), the Penrose House (LAS Building), and Lulu Express at housing lot 4.

The initiative is in collaboration with Al Haya Waste Management & Projects Company and is set to run until the end of December, giving people enough time to recycle. 

“We decided to lengthen the campaign because of the overwhelmingly positive response we received last year, with more than 4.5 tons of e-waste collected in just seven days. Ultimately, we aim to make these bins semi-permanent features,” Ghani added.

After electronics are received, Al Haya facility collects, categorizes, packs and then ships them to a special recycling factory in Singapore. 

The recycling factory then breaks and separates the e-waste, turning them into materials such as plastic, copper, and aluminum. They then get sent to other factories and made into new products.

“This is a nationwide recycling drive. We are trying to lead by example and encourage the nation to take a stand. And it is especially timely this week with Qatar Sustainability Week taking place,” Ghani said.

Joining QF in celebration of Sustainability Week is Qatar Airways (QA), which launched a new carbon offset scheme for passengers.

The scheme, launched officially on Tuesday, enables passengers to voluntarily offset their carbon emissions from their flight journeys when booking tickets. 

This means those travelling with the flagship national carrier can make a contribution that will be donated to eco-friendly projects in India aimed at reducing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

Since there is no alternative to aviation for long-distance travel, carbon offsetting was chosen as the most ideal avenue to limit the industry’s impact on climate change.

Read more: Qatar Airways says 99.9% of its passengers have been ‘COVID free’

In this case, the donations from the scheme will go to a wind turbine farm, which supplies clean electricity to the Indian National Grid.

Contributions will help sponsor a project that consists of 54 wind turbines, which generate a combined output of 108 MW, and avoids 210,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year.

QA’s latest sustainability efforts come as part of its partnership with IATA and profit-for-purpose company ClimateCare, joining several airlines globally to reduce their impact on the environment.

“We are delighted to welcome Qatar Airways to the IATA Carbon Offset Programme. Their commitment underlines our industry’s determination to reduce our impact on the environment while allowing Qatar Airways’ customers the opportunity to lessen the environmental impact of their own travel,” Alexandre de Juniac, Director and CEO of IATA, said in a statement seen by Simple Flying.


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