Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA) has recently announced that it will begin construction on a new plant to turn bauxite residue, a by-product of smelting aluminium, into soil.

The smelting of aluminium is a key industry within the Gulf Region. Aluminium Bahrain (ALBA), Ma’aden Aluminium Company (MAC), Qatalum and EGA are each recognised as important part of the industrial sector within their respective countries.

Aluminium is a widely-used metal, including within the construction industry due to its lightweight and corrosive resistant properties and as such, any breakthrough in making the materials used in construction "green" will be positively received.

The soil produced by EGA will be able to be used as an alternative to imported soil for greening and agricultural purposes. Whilst importing soil is not environmentally friendly, it is currently the main option for the UAE and its neighbours given their predominantly natural sandy and rugged landscape.

Sustainability and green initiatives are now at the heart of the GCC's development plans, including the announcements across the region of "Net Zero" targets in Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain and the approval of the Integrated Waste Management Strategy 2021-2041 in Dubai.

As such, given the Region's welcome move to a sustainable future, it is likely that further green initiatives and projects will be developed in the coming years to “help turn the desert green”.

Further details of this Project and the Region's visions can be found in the links below:

A sustainable Saudi vision

Dubai's IWM Strategy 2021-2041 approved

 https://www.ega.ae/en/media-releases/2022/february/bxr-pilot-plant