Solid Waste Management in the MENA Region

Karim Elgendy

The Middle East and North Africa generates slightly more Municipal solid waste per capita than the global average. Yet per capita waste generation widely between regional countries that have high levels of material consumption and waste generation and others with much lower levels of consumption. This variation is most obvious between the GCC countries on the one hand, and the Levant and North African countries on the other.

With an average of 1.5 kilograms of municipal solid waste generation per person per day in the GCC, waste generation is more than double that of the average Levant and North Africa resident, which is estimated at 0.7 kilograms. One exception to this is Israel, which at 1.77 kilograms of solid waste per capita per day, is higher than the GCC average.

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The State of Egypt’s Sustainability Agenda

Karim Elgendy

Two weeks ago, The English version of a leading Egyptian daily published an opinion piece on entitled “Our local ‘green’ agenda.” In his article, the author made a number of intriguing arguments that suggest that Egypt has a unique environmental agenda and a set of sustainability priorities that are different from the predominant global ones.  He also suggests that imported ‘green’ concepts fail to take into consideration ingrained conservationist behaviors that already exist in Egypt.

While I agree that each country must develop a local approach to sustainability which responds to its specific socio-economic and environmental needs, I found many of the author’s arguments to lack sufficient context, and was therefore concerned that the article could potentially result in an inaccurate representation of the state of sustainability in Egypt.

Cairo's Old City. Copyrights: Karim Elgendy

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