Construction waste accounts for more than 50% of the GCC region’s landfill space. In Saudi Arabia, the local construction sector will see a reduction in its carbon footprint with the opening of Saudi Investment Recycling Company (SIRC)’s state-of-the-art construction and demolition waste (CDW) recycling plant.
Located in Al Khair, northern Riyadh, the facility spans more than 1.3 million square meters and will process 600 tons of waste per hour. Reportedly, it will achieve 90% recycling rates, sustainably converting CDW into aggregates for construction projects and road development. Its recycled materials will be used for an upcoming housing complex project comprising 35,000 units.
While owned and operated by SIRC, the facility was developed under a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the National Centre for Waste Management and Amanat al-Riyadh. It has been under construction for a year and will begin receiving waste in mid-June 2020 with full operations starting by the end of July 2020. The Municipal Administration of Riyadh will be responsible for coordinating with CDW collectors and contractors for the efficient transfer of waste to the facility.
In terms of annual output, the facility will process 20 million tons of CDW from vacant plots and 5 million tons of CDW from illegal landfills and old sites. In future years, the plant’s capacity will be expanded to process fertilizers, paper, plastics, and metals.
In addition to launching this new facility, SIRC also acquired Global Environmental Management Services (GEMS) from Jadwa Waste Management Opportunities Fund in October 2019. The acquisition has transferred the operation of GEMS’ four current plants in Yanbu, Rabigh, Johfa, and Dammam to SIRC, which will also run its soon-to-be-completed plants in Jubail and Jizan.
With this acquisition, SIRC says it will be able to help Saudi Arabia realize its goal of recycling 85% of its industrial and hazardous waste while landfilling the remaining 15% by 2035.