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Recycling and Waste Management

Recycling and Waste Management

Diverse recycling efforts throughout the Emirates Group continue to pave the way for future initiatives

The Emirates Group recycling programmes are relatively new, having begun in the 2009-10 year. The programmes have been a huge success, targeting a diverse group of waste streams and steadily growing volumes each year. This includes collecting recyclable materials from office and residential waste as well as recyclable materials from units such as Emirates Engineering and Emirates Flight Catering. In 2012-13, more than 7,642 tonnes of waste were recycled by the Emirates Group in Dubai, with a further 3,055 tonnes collected by overseas Emirates offices and business units. Overall, recycling volumes doubled in 2012-13 to 10,697 tonnes, a significant accomplishment. The primary reason for this increase was due to the inclusion of Alpha Flight Group recycling and its 4,900 tonnes of cooking oil recycled last year, pushing overall cooking oil volumes for the Emirates Group up 5,615% year on year. The second fastest percentage gain was in glass recycling, which increased 9,079% after Emirates Flight Catering began collecting used bottles and donating them to a local bottling company to be ground into cullet.

Emirates Flight Catering (EKFC)

EKFC is one of the world’s largest airline catering firms, preparing as many as 150,000 meals in a day. At the end of each day, a significant amount of leftover food, as well as used cans, bottles and other items makes its way back to EKFC’s facilities at Dubai International Airport. An extensive recycling programme was implemented by EKFC in early 2010, diverting a wide range of materials from landfill, including paper and cardboard, aluminium foil and cans, steel and tin cans, plastic bottles and containers, and cooking oil and wood. Over 23,000 kg of materials were recycled in the 2012-13 financial year.

Emirates Engineering (EKE)

In 2010 we initiated a programme to recover and recycle materials related to a conversion programme for 33 Boeing 777s set to receive new interiors. This includes seat frames which are made of aviation-grade 2017A aluminium alloy, steel items, polycarbonate plastics (from seat mouldings), wiring, carpet, textile and leather seat coverings, and even electric motors which move the seats into various positions in our premium cabins. All of these items are weighed, checked and sent off for recycling. The quantities of materials separated and sent for recycling tell of the programme’s success: over 432,904 kilograms of materials have been diverted from landfill since the start of the project in August 2010 to the end of the 2012-13 financial year. This includes 103,396 kg of 2017A aviation grade aluminium, 183,202 kg of polycarbonate plastic, 81,109 kg of textiles, leather and carpet, 702 kg of cables and 495 kg of electric motors/actuators. In addition to this, Emirates Engineering recycled a further 3,553,793 kilograms of recyclable materials from its general waste stream, including 86,904 kg of scrap metal and tin cans, 164,582 kg of plastic containers, 3,302,307 kg of cardboard and paper.

Environmental Report 2012-13