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Waste-to-Energy Project in Maldives Gets AIIB Support

Power News - Published on Thu, 24 Sep 2020

Image Source: Waste to Energy Maldives
As an island state, the Maldives does not have a lot of land to waste. Eighty percent of its total land area is distributed among 1,200 coral islands, of which only 188 are inhabited, many are remote, and nearly all are physically vulnerable to rising sea levels. The Maldives created the artificial island of Thilafushi some 30 years ago to serve as a dumpsite for the waste generated in the Greater Malé capital region. As the Maldives’ economy is based mainly on tourism and fisheries, both of which rely heavily on a pristine environment, a more sustainable solution to the garbage problem had to be found.

In response, the Government of Maldives, with support from the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and other multilateral development banks, is putting up a sustainable regional solid waste treatment system in the Greater Malé region. It has the goal of ensuring the safe disposal or recycling of waste, reducing the greenhouse gas emissions of the island state, and generating electricity from waste-to-energy. The facility is intended to handle 500 tons of waste per day and convert it to electricity, which is eventually expected to generate eight megawatts of surplus electricity by the end of 2024.

AIIB has approved a USD40-million loan for the Greater Malé Waste-to-Energy Project, which is being co-financed by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Japan Fund for the Joint Crediting Mechanism.

This is the second AIIB loan to the Maldives, the first being a loan under AIIB’s COVID-19 Crisis Recovery Facility to help the country with its Emergency Response and Health Systems Preparedness Project against COVID-19.

Because the country is at great risk of rising sea levels due to climate change, as well as natural disasters like tsunamis and extreme climate events, the project design incorporates disaster-and climate-resilient features such as raised floor elevations, and flood-proof mechanical and electrical equipment. The cost estimates and implementation schedule also accommodate possible delays or cost increases due to the impact of COVID-19 on supply chains.

The project includes a capacity building component to help government officials manage the project and conduct environmental monitoring. In addition, targeted public awareness campaigns in the main population centers of Malé, Hulhumale, and Villimale will be provided to raise awareness of the new waste collection and waste management system, and 3R (Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle) behaviors to support a clean environment.

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Posted By : Yogender Pancholi on Thu, 24 Sep 2020
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