From Treasure to Trash

In the tiny, oil rich country of Kuwait, there is more waste production per capita than any other country in the world. The number of landfills in this small country far exceeds the recycling plants that could potentially process this heavy burden. In fact, from the staggering 18 landfills dug for burying waste, 14 of them were shut down because they did not meet International waste standards, with only four remaining in operation.

Most of Kuwait’s waste is abandoned, not recycled. The country carries a record for having the biggest tire dump in the world, with a total of seven million tires. Every year, gigantic holes are dug out from the earth in Sulaibiyah desert near Kuwait City and filled with used tires that are shipped from all over the world with no solution in sight. The expanse of rubber is so vast, that they are now visible from outer space.

As a result of poor practices, Kuwait has been plagued by the problem of waste management. The essentials to running an effective recycling company require collecting the waste, material segregating companies, and efficient recycling factories. An estimated 95% of the country’s waste should, and could be recycled. The demand for such a system encourages business owners to create recycling businesses. However, success is largely dependent on support from the government bodies that govern such practices, which can be a slow, unpromising process. Enviroserve works tirelessly in spite of that, guided by a goal to make a difference by replenishing the earth with her properties.

According to researchers, no governmental scheme exists in Kuwait for municipal waste recycling and segregation of waste occurred at landfill sites, no subsidies are offered for plastic recycling, there are no enforcements of recycling laws, and finally, there’s a lack of responsibility to the environment on both a corporate, and individual level. If one or more of the previous factors are accounted for, Kuwait could be on its way to improving national waste management and its policies.

Evidently, the waste management system requires a full overhaul, one that would derive raw materials as well as potentially supplying a significant amount of power to the country through waste to energy plants. Today, the recycling efforts are entirely private and depend on purchasing waste for processing, as opposed to being paid for a service that is needed here more than anywhere on earth, quite literally.

When we turn something old into something new, it benefits the environment in so many ways. We conserve natural recourses, protect ecosystems and wildlife, reduce the demand for raw materials, save energy, and provide jobs for those who need them. The world’s natural recourses are finite, and a few of the ones we depend on the most are in very short supply. Each country gives recycling a different priority – with Germany, Austria, South Korea, and Wales holding the best rates in the world, while countries in The Middle East fall behind in the process. Enviroserve aims to spur environmental awareness, and become the voice of encouragement for living in a cleaner, greener Kuwait.

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