As part of an ongoing focus on sustainable tourism development in Ras Al Khaimah, a five-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the following government entities: Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority (RAKTDA), the Ras Al Khaimah Waste Management Agency (RAKWMA), Ras Al Khaimah Wastewater Agency (RAKWA) and Ras Al Khaimah Municipality (RAKMUN).
The main objective of the MoU is to ensure that the cooking oil used in the emirate complies with or exceeds global best practices in health, safety and waste disposal standards, with the current primary focus being the hospitality industry.
The government entities firmly believe the MoU is a positive step towards achieving the sustainability goals for the emirate. In order to protect public health and make sure regulatory measures are complied with across the emirate, coordination and cooperation between the responsible government bodies that oversee waste management, wastewater, food safety control, energy and sustainability and tourism is essential to make this initiative successful. As part of its role in this effort, RAKTDA will be communicating the new guidelines and measures for cooking oil quality standards with all the relevant stakeholders in the hospitality and tourism sector in RAK.
The MoU will see the standardisation and regulation of the quality of cooking oil for hotels, restaurants, cafes and commercial kitchens. Additionally, the government entities will also be responsible for protecting the environment by preventing landfill from used cooking oil thereby reducing associated greenhouse gasses.
In light of the new initiative, the emirate is anticipated to generate about 244,000 litres of Used Cooking Oil, (UCO) per month. Therefore, exploring the feasibility of facilitating recycling cooking oil into biofuel to achieve sustainable solutions and meet the growing demand of fuel in the emirate, while lowering the carbon footprint. The MoU will also include developing, recommending and implementing appropriate regulatory measures to ensure the proper collection, treatment and re-use techniques for used cooking oil.
The committee members will also closely monitor the hotels and hospitality establishments to ensure the necessary equipment is available to measure the quality of their cooking oil, with RAKTDA and the municipality conducting inspections on a regular basis. Awareness and training sessions will also be provided for this new initiative.
This circular economy will thus ensure that this valuable commodity is recycled and converted into biodiesel.