Marking Global Recycling Day, Qatar Foundation has announced plans to build Green Island – Qatar’s first recycling hub – within Education City, in partnership with Seashore Group.
“It is no secret that there is a gaping hole when it comes to recycling in Qatar,” said Nawal Al-Sulaiti, Sustainability Manager, Qatar Foundation (QF).
“And the desperate need to fill that gap and do more to empower the community, particularly the younger generation, and arm them with the tools needed become environmentally conscious citizens, is what led to the birth of Green Island.”
Green Island will kick off with six recycling streams – paper, plastic, aluminum cans, e-waste, batteries, and organic waste. Partially powered by solar panels, it will be easily accessible by public transport, including the EC Tram.
Ground has been broken at the project site and the recycling hub is expected to be open to the public by October, if not sooner. Spanning more than 8,000 square meters, Green Island will be made up of 95 end-of-life shipping containers, which have been donated by Milaha – one of the largest maritime and logistics companies in the Middle East.
According to Al-Sulaiti, young people will be a major target. “It is easier to get youth to take up new habits when compared to adults, and these youth can then get their families to follow. Their power to bring about change is huge and is the driving force we need to cultivate a sustainability mindset in Qatar.
“Education and awareness will be a primary objective of this project; a lot of effort has been put in to making it an interactive and active learning experience. Each container will have a large screen mounted on it which will allow community members to see the various steps that a certain type of waste goes through as it’s recycled,” said Ouassim M. Alami, Strategic Initiatives Advisor, QF.
Green Island will also feature research labs, a themed giftshop, an open space for exhibitions and lectures, organic cafes, and a farm-to-table restaurant with its vertical farm onsite. Additionally, it will house an art gallery where students can exhibit pieces of recyclable waste, as well as a 3D printing lab that prints using recycled concrete.
“Think of Green Island as an incubator for any person or initiative that thinks green – it will have something for everyone,” Alami said.
“Awareness sessions for people that are yet to start recycling. Lectures and talks for those that already do but want to learn about the nitty gritty of recycling. Workshops for those that want to upcycle waste. Mentoring sessions and a launch pad for those with a sustainable business idea.”
While there is no fee attached to the containers, tenants will be required to offer a value proposition. For example, if you are starting a vintage clothing upcycling business, you will in turn offer the community workshops on how to upcycle.
Al-Sulaiti said: “We are laying the groundwork, but Qatar’s community is what will drive this initiative. We hope that green island will create a ripple effect that will mark the start of community recycling hubs in Qatar and that soon we will see others wanting to replicate it, with recycling hubs popping up in every neighborhood, just like we have parks.”
Source and cover image: Press Release
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