Waste is often considered a financial and environmental burden with no value, and when improperly managed, waste is hazardous to humans, the economy and the environment (both global and local). Municipalities around the world often face the same challenges when dealing with waste, from lacking or inadequate facilities, improper maintenance of, or faulty, equipment, scarce collection points, to over-reliance on landfill disposal, etc. With modern techniques and appropriate technology, municipal waste can be transformed to create economic value through recycling, re-use and/or conversion to energy.
Not all waste needs to be wasted – materials such as plastics, aluminium, glass, textiles, biomass, or even sludge, can be reconverted into either raw materials or energy. Several techniques and technologies exist to add value to waste.
A cooperation agreement was signed in 2013 with the Algerian government – between Arnold Schwarzenegger (on behalf of R20) and Mr Amara Benyounes (Algerian Minister for Environment), with the support of the Prime Minister, Mr. Abdelmalek Sellal – to make the Wilaya of Oran a model region for waste conversion programs. The agreement also covers plans to develop a series of bankable projects in waste management, energy efficiency and renewable energy.