The cabinet on Monday approved a plan submitted by the Ministry of Environment that seeks to encourage the increase in waste used as energy in cement plants to 15% by 2030, according to Minister of Environment Khaled Fahmy.
Fahmy said that the cabinet adopted the plan, adding that discussions are underway with heads of plants to discuss problems they face in using waste as fuel.
In a press conference held Monday, Fahmy added that Prime Minister Sherif Ismail directed all sectors operating in the Egyptian market to begin conducting studies to understand the current amount of energy consumed in factories and ways to diversify how they power themselves through alternatives that can be produced from waste recycling.
The minister noted that the ministry’s plan cited taking advantage of nearly 22m tonnes of solid waste and 30m tonnes of agricultural residues to produce the refuse-derived fuel (RDF), which is used in heavy industries, cement plants, and others.
He pointed out that Ministry of Environment and Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy are currently preparing legislations needed to encourage investors to start businesses in the field of recycling waste to produce energy.
“The real problems facing investors in the waste recycling business is the lack of commitment by cleaning companies to provide the required quantities of waste to be recycled and used as an alternative fuel,” Fahmy said. “The ministry is currently trying to equip waste management vehicles with the latest technology to improve their collection performance.”
According to a study conducted by International Finance Corporation (IFC), the increasing use of alternative fuel sources will contribute to saving an estimated $51m annually by 2025, in addition to reducing the current emissions of carbon dioxide resulting from cement factories.
The study noted that the consumption of Egypt’s cement plants using coal will reach 9.7m tonnes annually by 2025.
The study added that using alternative fuel sources would replace 1.9m tonnes of coal fuel and thus prevent the emissions of 3.9m tonnes of carbon dioxide.