A Cooperation Program has been signed between Sultan Qaboos University (SQU)) and Oman Environmental Services Holding Company (“be’ah”) to establish a mutually beneficial partnership that will strengthen the ‘green campus’ mission of SQU. The cooperation program aims to promote the strategic goals of be’ah with regard to achieving landfill diversion and promote circular economy initiatives across the Sultanate of Oman, through the establishment of a Reuse Center. The proposed Center will be located within the premises of SQU.
Through the partnership, SQU and be’ah agree that the Reuse Center would help meet the goals of both be’ah and SQU. These include achieving SQU’s goals of promoting campus sustainability best practices from the campus community by encouraging active participation in green initiatives; and achieving be’ah’s strategy of waste diversion from landfill by introducing waste reduction and reuse practices thus reducing carbon footprint and green gas emissions from landfilling. The partnership also seeks to achieve In-Country Value (“ICV”) through creating employment, aiming to achieve an Omanization target of at least 90% during the operational phase of the Center as the project progresses. The program seeks to strengthen and unify existing reuse efforts across the Sultanate under one umbrella to optimize the Center’s operations and meet the above stated objectives.
This Cooperation Program will continue to be in force for period of three years. It was signed on 3 September 2018 by H.E. Dr. Ali bin Saud Al Bimani, the Vice Chancellor of SQU and Mr. Tariq Al Amri, Chief Executive Officer of Oman Environmental Services Holding Company (be’ah).
Oman Environmental Services Holding Company (be’ah) launched its nation-wide waste diversion strategy, which estimates that by 2020, it will be essential to divert 60% of waste from landfills and 80% by 2030. “be’ah” focuses on forming a pre-disposal waste diversion mindset promoting the concept of 3Rs ‘Reduce, Reuse & Recycle’ through the establishment of a joint ‘Reuse Center’ in collaboration with SQU, which is currently exploring opportunities to promote its sustainable development culture and practices within the campus community. The Reuse Centre initiative, which will be the first of its kind in the entire GCC region, will encourage university staff and students to be actively involved in waste reduction and minimization activities. The Reuse Center will provide environmental, financial, economic and social benefits for all stakeholders involved and will become a centralized hub promoting sound environmental practices across the country.
In line with SQU’s drive towards sustainability and environmental stewardship, the Reuse Center will be of utmost importance to facilitate sustainability goals of the University. All departments within the campus have surplus items that are either kept, stored or disposed of, promoting a wasteful and inefficient system. The ‘reuse seed’ if planted at SQU, will present an initial move towards sustainability on campus, which will grow into an integrated web-like flow of items throughout the university and beyond into the community. With effective campaigns, social media initiatives and awareness programs, the impact of the reuse activities within SQU will promote nation-wide practices of eliminating unnecessary purchase of goods (i.e. waste reduction mindset) which should become a final resort rather than an initial action.