Lit­ter scouts take to skies

Drones to scan for dumped waste

7 Days in Dubai - - NEWS - By Shabnam Bashiri @Shab­namBashiri

Drones are be­ing used by Dubai Mu­nic­i­pal­ity to find lit­ter that has been dumped in moun­tain­ous re­gions and beaches.

The mu­nic­i­pal­ity has come up with the scheme in an at­tempt to re­duce the 7,500 tonnes of waste that are gen­er­ated each day.

Once a lo­ca­tion is con­firmed to con­tain dumped waste by the drone, Dubai Mu­nic­i­pal­ity sends a team to clean it up, said Ab­dul­ma­jeed Saifaie, Di­rec­tor of the Waste Man­age­ment De­part­ment.

“It is far more ef­fi­cient now with the drone cam­eras rather than send­ing mul­ti­ple ve­hi­cles and man­power in search of waste in non-spe­cific lo­ca­tions,”he said.

Drones will also be in­tro­duced on all pub­lic beaches in Dubai to scan for lit­ter­ing, in black and white footage, “to al­low some sem­blance of pri­vacy to beach­go­ers” and keep the en­vi­ron­ment clean.

Saifaie said: “Our ef­forts have brought the amount of waste dumped at land­fills from 11,500 tonnes per day in 2010 to 7,500 tons to­day. “Once the sys­tem is fully equipped with smart tech­nolo­gies, we will re­duce waste ar­riv­ing at the land­fill by an­other 20 per cent in the com­ing years,” he added.

The ini­tia­tive will be achieved with the in­tro­duc­tion of Smart Gate, a GPS ve­hi­cle track­ing sys­tem, and 13 new re­cy­cling sta­tions by the end of this year, as well as a gate fee.

A re­cent Dubai Mu­nic­i­pal­ity sur­vey found that 40 per cent of waste is com­ing from com­mer­cial sec­tors, in­clud­ing ho­tels and shop­ping malls.

Saifaie be­lieves that more than 20 per cent of waste found in Dubai is dumped by com­pa­nies from other emi­rates.

‘The drones will scan in black and white to al­low beach­go­ers a lit­tle bit of pri­vacy’ Mu­nic­i­pal­ity waste di­rec­tor Ab­dul­ma­jeed Saifaie

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