Sewage In Dubai

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Dubai, a small city in the U.A.E. on the Arabian Gulf, is the fastest growing city in the world. It is home to man made islands, world’s tallest buildings, and hundreds of other new developments. At the rate Dubai is growing, it is not surprising that the 1.5 million people who live there are facing a few problems (UAE Interact, 2007). Between the traffic congestions and the elevating living expenses comes the rising sewage problem. Dubai’s 30-year-old sewage system has not been able to catch up with the fast pace of its developments. No matter how many repairs and extensions are made to the system, it simply cannot catch up. This is where the conflict between the Dubai Municipality and the sewage truck drivers begins. The truck drivers have been making the same trip for years. After filling up their tanks at designated areas around the city, they drive several kilometres to the Al Aweer Sewage Treatment Plant [ASTP] where they pump out the waste, go back, and make the trip all over again. Six years ago, that trip could have been made up to five times a day. Today, a trucker would be lucky if he could make the trip twice in 24 hours. Since the amount of waste in Dubai has increased up to 25% every year, the Municipality decided to add new trucks to their fleet. One trucker who used to make 3 trips a day now only makes 1 trip since there are two new trucks to lighten the load. At first, this may have been a good idea, but now the truck drivers are sitting in traffic for up to 18 hours a day. They queue all along Al Khail and Emirates Road just to get to Al Aweer and then they wait many hours at the plant itself before reaching one of the 40 pumps available. For the 10,000 trucks that make it to ASTP daily, 40 pumps is not enough, and it had become apparent that the ASTP had reached its maximum capacity. The tank truck drivers are paid by trip, and charge between

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