Meeting of the Project steering Committee

The meeting of the project steering committee was held in the presence of Dr. Inas Abu Taleb, Head of the Environmental Affairs Authority, Dr. Ahmed Farouk, Head of Waste Management Regulatory Authority, and Dr. Ilham Rifaat, Director General of Hazardous Materials and Waste management, and members of the Committee, where the project's achievements and current and future activities were reviewed.
Engineer Ahmed Abdel Hamid, project manager, gave a full overview of the achievements made regarding the inventory and safe disposal of high-risk, stagnant pesticides, where the beginning was the disposal of 220 tons of shipment of landin pesticide sought in the port of Al-Adaba and transported the shipment and burned in furnaces specific to France, in addition to another 20 tons stored in the areas of Bahtim and Al-Saf.
Abdel Hamid also reviewed the effort to safely dispose of 470 tons of high-risk pesticides and Wastes that were stored in a warehouse in the Al-Saf area of Giza and transported to burn in furnaces specific to Sweden and France.
He reviewed the project's survey of Egyptian ports to achieve the security and safety of ports, where quantities of pesticides were accounted for through some of the seizures in them, where more than 73 tons were already collected, classified and analysed in the literary ports of Safaga- Nuweiba - Alexandria and were safely disposed of and burned some of their types in furnaces by a number of cement companies as alternative fuels, and that some scientific studies were carried out.
In this context, the project has also developed an integrated guide to the Port Authority on how to manage and deal with hazardous wastes, and the project also participates in providing advice and expertise in cabinet meetings on this subject.
To complement the project's tasks, Engineer Ahmed Abdel Hamid also spoke about the collection, inventory, classification and analysis of more than 350 other tons of high-risk pesticides for safe disposal. An international tender has already been submitted under the supervision of the World Bank to bring in the best international companies in this field.
Abdul Hamid stressed the project's keenness to take all scientific measures in all its steps and to observe the highest international standards and requirements in this field, as well as keenness to bring in the best experiences and local and international companies and the work of the necessary studies, especially environmental impact assessment studies before the implementation of any step, and also stressed the interest of the project on building cadres and national capacities, where many training workshops were organized in the presence of the ministries of environment and agriculture, as well as the central laboratory of pesticides in the Ministry of Agriculture was provided with special equipment for the analysis of organic pollutants. The cooperation between the two ministries has resulted in the allocation of a pop unit within the laboratory.
Then Eng. Ahmed Abd El-Hamid presented the steps that have been made so far to safely dispose of the oils of transformers contaminated with PCBs in cooperation with the Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy, he said that samples of about 13,310 transformers were withdrawn and reached the target of this component of 1000 tons and formed a scientific committee of senior experts in this field, including Dr. Massimo Pombelli, who participated via video technology Conference in the session and talked about the scientific presentation of the safe disposal of contaminated oils with Treatment techniques and the use of two mobile processing units that will imported and utilized in the future.
In this context, Eng. Ahmed Abdel Hamid talked about the importance of this offer economically, as it saves the cost of importing these expensive oils, as well as transfer the experience of treatment by these two units to Arab and African neighboring countries in agreement with the exporting company, and has already been put forward an international tender for companies working in this field and the scientific committee has settled on one of the International companies and has been discussed all the details with it and items including the need to provide practical and theoretical training to employees of electricity companies on the use and maintenance of the processing unit and the work of study For the life cycle of these oils and take a sample of each transformer and provide warranty certificates for at least 18 months from the date of contract and the company must pledge to supply processing supplies and provide technical support and that the parts of the processing unit are available for a long time after, and confirmed the project's keenness to develop an integrated logistics plan during the work of the processing units and move from one site to another and the project is now preparing a guide to manage poPs, hazardous waste and recycling.
The meeting of the steering committee also touched on the next phase where the project was extended another 6 months to complete its work, as well as the purchase of equipment to measure air pollution and was approved to form a joint committee between the ministries of agriculture and environment to establish a specific mechanism for the safe disposal of any seizures of pesticides in the future and legal dealing with them. Dr. Mohammed Abdel-Magied, a member of the committee and chairman of the Agricultural Pesticides Committee of the Ministry of Agriculture, praised the efforts of the project and considered it a model for fruitful cooperation between the Ministries of Environment and Agriculture, and Eng. Ahmed Mhina, first undersecretary of the Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy for research and planning praised also, the fruitful cooperation between the Ministries of Environment and Electricity through this project, which find solution to the problem of converted transformers contaminated with PCBs Mhina praised also the project keenness to provide global expertise in this field and train national cadres.
The Committee agreed on the importance of raising more awareness on the subject.