Veolia helps in the fight against climate change in the Middle East

Bringing together policy makers and journalists in Dubai, Antoine Frérot and Patrice Fonlladosa - respectively Veolia’s CEO and Executive Vice President for Africa and Middle East - presented the solutions the Group has developed to meet the particularly crucial climate issues this region of the world faces.


  • “The climate challenge is a challenge for all; it is also ours. That is why for many years, Veolia has been involved in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, whether our own or those of our clients. It is our Group's triple responsibility:

  • as global leader in environmental services,

  • as the partner of many cities, because cities produce 80% of the world's CO2

  • as a designer, supplier and operator of solutions that effectively reduce greenhouse gases produced by industry and municipalities,” says Antoine Frérot. 
    The Middle East is particularly concerned by the scarcity of natural resources. Veolia is developing numerous solutions to deal with this new challenge: the energy efficiency of buildings and our facilities, primarily, but also water and waste management solutions based on the principles of the circular economy.

Desalinating seawater in Masdar using renewable energy

The pilot plant for seawater desalination developed in partnership with Masdar in the United Arab Emirates calls for new desalination technologies to minimize the energy needed for the treatment of sea water. This already leads to an energy recovery of 98% throughout the process. The ultimate goal is to be able to meet these needs via 100% renewable energy.

100% reuse of wastewater from the city of Ajman in 2020

In 2020, 100% of the wastewater from the capital of the Emirate of Ajman (population 235,000) will be treated and reused for irrigation (i.e. 136,000 m3 / d). Reusing 1m3 of wastewater emits only 200 to 400g CO2, compared with 3000 to 7000g for the potable water obtained through desalination. Currently, nearly half of all the treated wastewater is reused for irrigation, watering parks, gardens and leisure facilities, and as process water for a nearby production plant.


Promoting energy efficiency in Dubai


As Patrice Fonlladosa points out, "Energy efficiency is one of the biggest challenges in limiting greenhouse gas emissions in the region, but without harming its strong economic development. Efforts in this area should not be considered a constraint but an opportunity for companies to become more efficient and sustainable."


In 2014 at the headquarters of Enova [1] - a Veolia and Majid Al Futtaim joint venture - Veolia therefore created Dubai's first energy efficiency center which collects and processes real-time data from more than 5000 customers. The reward: 30% of contractually guaranteed energy savings for energy efficient buildings.

Veolia's climate commitments :
Veolia is committed to 3 basic measures in order to curb greenhouse gas emissions:
- the development of a new resource use model that is more sober, more efficient and based on the use of renewable energy in accordance with circular economy principles.
- the application of the polluter pays principle, which means setting and applying a robust and predictable carbon price of 30 to 40 euros per metric ton
- the reduction of greenhouse gases with short life times but high warming effects - such as methane.

In practical terms, the Group is committed to
-100 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent emissions reduced over the period 2015-2020
-50 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent emissions avoided over the period 2015 - 2020
-capturing more than 60% of the methane produced in the Group's waste disposal centers

More :  

Veolia's commitment to the climate


[1] Created in 2002, Enova provides services for the public, residential, commercial, industrial, and health sectors, with 2,000 employees in seven countries (Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE, Egypt, Lebanon, Oman and Qatar).