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Wali A. Zaalene : “we must act now to rationalize the use of our energy”
By PKB | 12th July 2016 | Updated at 05:07
| Interview with Mister Zaalene , Wali of Oran and Vice Chairman of the R20 for North Africa.
Why environmental issues are important for the Wilaya of Oran ?
Like the entire country, Oran is currently experiencing an unprecedented development. Indeed, today many highlights and structuring projects for the region are being born. We can mention: the new ring road of the city, harbor the avoidance route, the extension of the tram route (streetcar), new sports facilities in the city and many new urban and industrial projects. It is important, for the future, that this development should be done in a perennial and respectful way of the environment; all this, of course, while limiting the effects of climate change that affect our planet, but also, in particular, to ensure the region of Oran a viable local environment and a sustainable economy.
Algeria has sufficient energy resources, why invest in energy saving and renewable energy ?
It is true that Algeria has today sufficient gas resources for its energy supply, but domestic demand has experienced, these last years, a very strong growth on one hand because of economic development and population growth, but also because of low internal energy costs. Moreover, knowing that, by nature, hydrocarbon resources are limited and energy-intensive infrastructure construction of today are made to endure, we can realize the future problem. This is why we must act now to rationalize the use of our energy, as advocated by the national program on energy efficiency and renewable energy adopted in May 2015 by the Algerian government. This is also why, in the implementation of the framework partnership agreement signed on June 25th 2013 between the Algerian Government and the R20 (Regions of Climate Action ) aiming to promote green economy in Oran as a driver of the Wilaya, I have strengthened the action of energy efficiency by an order of the Wilaya, for the creation of a Centre For Eco-Construction Promotion for green building , consisting of both local and national, public and private actors, to initiate projects and develop information campaigns, education and training towards the institutions, building professionals and citizens.
One of the priorities of Oran in sustainable development is to improve its waste management, why?
Through the national program of municipal waste, our country has already achieved a number of facilities aiming to improve the waste collection (eradication dumps, creation of landfills, etc.). The second phase of the program is to qualitatively improve the management of waste by processing, recovery and recycling, thus contributing to the creation of new jobs. For this purpose, Oran, with the support of R20, initiated a demonstration project of sorting at source of household waste. The project currently affects about 40,000 people and managed to recover more than 300 tons of recyclable materials in nearly a year. This first success already encourages private industry to settle in Oran to process these materials. This project does not end there, since many other projects are initiated to change drastically waste management at the city, as the pilot project of production of compost, which is useful for our agriculture.
What help has the R20 brought you at the Wilaya ?
Change the way to deal with waste is a challenge in a big city like Oran. Indeed, many public and private actors are part of the process and may have divergent interests and very different levels of training . For example, R20 has provide us a valuable assistance in this area and was able to bring together a broad coalition to ensure the success and sustainability of its projects. More generally speaking, the R20 helps us to explore opportunities to develop more sustainably at the Wilaya of Oran and assists us in achieving our concrete projects, among others, through training of our managers and technicians and action -oriented education and mobilization of citizens.
We arrive at the end of the partnership framework agreement between the Ministry in charge of the Environment and the R20 , what conclusion do you draw from this experience and what are the goals you set for your Oran ?
Encouraging results are recorded on several fronts in Oran, as a pilot Wilaya of the Green Economy program. They are due mainly to the participatory approach, involving all stakeholders, adopted for implementation on the ground of the objectives of the pilot projects of selective separation at source of household waste, compost production, efficiency energy in buildings and public lighting, to be limited to those. Aspiring to become a true Mediterranean city, Oran has a development program involving all sectors. The structural projects in progress, will enable the wilaya of Oran to strengthen its economic attractiveness, social, environmental, cultural and tourism. With the reception, in the coming months, to several sports facilities, including the football stadium, sports complex and Olympic village, Oran will be worthy of a multitude of challenges, such as the organization of the Mediterranean Games in 2021.