Qatar’s commitment to recycling showcased during FIFA Arab Cup

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Zero waste from tournament venues was sent to landfill during the FIFA Arab Cup™, while 70% was successfully recycled at Al Bayt Stadium.

The Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC), in collaboration with FIFA and the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 LLC, ran a special project during the tournament in an effort to boost environmental sustainability in the lead-up to this year’s FIFA World Cup™. The project was supported by the Ministry of Municipality, the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, and local contractors.

Sustainable procurement practices, avoiding materials that produce waste, and using recyclable products in catering and logistics contributed to the effort. One project saw 900 reusable water bottles distributed to workforce and volunteers to curb the amount of plastic used during the tournament. In addition, waste segregation was implemented using various facilities, including recycling bins and a composting machine for organic waste, such as leftover food, biodegradable packaging and grass clippings. A baler was used to compress the plastic waste, while non-recyclable materials were sent to the Domestic Solid Waste Management Centre – a first-of-its-kind facility in the region – to be incinerated and converted into energy.

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Eng. Bodour Al Meer, Sustainability Director at the SC, said: “We are proud of the waste management practices we implemented during the FIFA Arab Cup. Promoting recycling is a key strategic objective of the Qatar 2022 Sustainability Strategy – and we look forward to building on our efforts in the lead-up to the FIFA World Cup, during the tournament and in legacy mode. We are compiling a list of lessons learned to ensure this type of project is delivered across tournament venues during the FIFA World Cup.”

Federico Addiechi, FIFA’s Head of Sustainability & Environment, said: “Each FIFA tournament provides us an opportunity to improve and to set higher goals. The FIFA World Cup in Qatar is no exception and the FIFA Arab Cup has given us the opportunity to test our operations and ensure all will be in place to achieve the waste management-related goals in the Qatar 2022 Sustainability Strategy.”

Eng. Ahmed Mohammed Al Sada, Assistant Undersecretary for General Services Affairs, Ministry of Municipality, said: “The State of Qatar has adopted a comprehensive plan to manage and recycle waste. The ministry implements various programmes, initiatives and events in order to deal with all types of waste. Furthermore, we encourage companies, corporations and individuals to minimise the use of waste-producing materials, and instead, use recycled materials.”

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Al Sada continued: “By 2030, the ministry will develop a methodology with regard to waste management and its significance. Such methodology will come to fruition through national campaigns and awareness programmes, for the sake of realising our goal of providing sustainable services for green and clean cities. Consequently, this will boost the community’s health and safety as well as overall quality of life.”

FIFA Arab Cup™ organisers also ran awareness projects at all six stadiums, including regular in-stadium screen announcements, social media posts and performances by a sustainability edutainment outreach group that used music to motivate people to dispose of their waste in the right bins. Every stadium recycled at least 42% of the waste generated, with the remainder being sent to the waste management centre to be converted into energy.

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