His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, has said that providing a high quality of life for citizens is a key priority for the government. The government seeks to develop projects and find creative solutions for achieving the strategic objective of ensuring sustainability and providing services for citizens, residents and visitors that meet the highest international standards. This helps ensure that the UAE remains a development model centred on the happiness of its people.
Sheikh Mohammed also stressed the importance of keeping pace with the latest scientific advances in various fields that offer effective solutions to the common challenges faced by societies, especially those related to the climate and environment. This requires continuous monitoring of global best practices to apply appropriate solutions that meet local needs, as well as indigenous efforts to develop new innovative solutions. "The real value of projects is measured by its positive impact on society, and its ability to improve people’s lives and achieve optimal use of resources. We should always be a benchmark for quality of life and for creating a bright future for our people. This requires creative thinking, comprehensive planning and speedy execution," His Highness said.
Sheikh Mohammed’s remarks came as he visited Dubai Municipality today, accompanied by H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai; H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority and Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group; H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation; Khalifa Saeed Suleiman Director General of the Department of Protocol and Hospitality in Dubai, and Abdulla Ahmed Al Habbai Chairman of Dubai Holding and Group Chairman of Meraas.
During the visit, Director General of Dubai Municipality Dawood Al Hajri briefed His Highness Sheikh Mohammed about four projects that the Municipality is currently implementing at a total cost of AED 6.5 billion. These include the Dubai Deep Tunnel Storm Water System, Waste Management Centre, Dubai Municipality Environmental Satellite and Dubai Traditional Market projects.
The Dubai Deep Tunnel Storm Water System is the first project of its kind in the Middle East that aims to collect and convey groundwater and stormwater runoff, and then store it and direct it to the sea. The project is critical to face future challenges coming from rains over the next 100 years. The project has a capacity of 110 m3 per minute (6600 tonne per minute), which is double the flow of the Thames River in London. The Dubai Deep Tunnel Storm Water System will drain 40 per cent of the entire area of the city. It will serve the whole of Dubai South, which is home to Dubai’s Al Maktoum Airport and the EXPO 2020.
His Highness was also briefed about the world’s largest single waste-to-energy plant, built on two hectares of land in the Warsan area. The plant will consume the city’s solid, industrial and commercial waste and convert them into electricity. Gases produced by the waste will be burned in order to turn a steam turbine to generate electricity. Incombustible material will be left as recyclable ash, from which useful metals can be extracted for reuse. The gas will be treated with lime and filtered to minimise the release of pollutants during processing.
The plant is set to have a thermal transfer efficiency of 29 per cent, the highest percentage of its kind in the world. The first line of the plant will be operational in 2022, with full lines ready by 2023, spanning an area of 55 acres. The plant will have a processing capacity of 1.9 million tonnes a year.
Other projects include the region's first environmental nanometric satellite named DM SAT1, which is designed to collect and analyse environmental data that will be used to find solutions for increasing pollution in cities and to address climate change. DM SAT1 is a joint project between Dubai Municipality and The Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre. The assembling of DM SAT1 is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2019, and launched by year-end.
Other projects His Highness was briefed about included the development of traditional souqs in the Deira and Bur Dubai areas, which are set to attract 12 million visitors by 2020. His Highness praised the efforts of the Municipality, and the positive outcomes of its projects that will further support the strategic objectives of Dubai.