Shah Alam, 13 June 2019 – As part of its commitment to promote scientific thoughts and research collaboration on waste management technology and issues relating to solid waste management (SWM), Worldwide Holdings Berhad today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) to cement the collaboration between the two organisations.
This MoU comes after the first successful collaboration between Worldwide Holdings Berhad (WHB), Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) and Institute of Technology Cambodia (ITC) in 2015 to strengthen, promote and develop international research co-operation between the three parties on SWM matters, which ended in July 2017. Since then, Worldwide Holdings and UiTM continued to actively explore new research areas to promote academic discussion and exchange between academia and industry on waste management technology.
The MoU between Worldwide Holdings and UiTM will focus on enhanced research on four main areas, namely Biotechnology in Leachate Treatment; Solid Waste Treatment; Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) based project; and Value Chain Management in Municipal Solid Waste.
Its Group Chief Executive Officer, Datin Paduka Norazlina Zakaria said, “As the pioneer in engineered sanitary landfill in Malaysia, Worldwide Holdings Berhad continues to look for avenues to lead environmental solutions through new and advanced technologies, taking solid waste management to another level. We also take pride in undertaking innovative projects to give back to the community such as rehabilitation and upgrading of dumpsites.”
“Collaboration with top academic institution such as UiTM will pave the way for us to continue doing so for the benefit of our future generation, as our way of giving back to the community and the nation,” she added.
The MoU was signed by Datin Paduka Norazlina Zakaria and UiTM Vice Chancellor, Professor Dr Mohd Azraai Kassim, witnessed by Zamri Abdul Rahman, Chief Operating Officer of Worldwide Environment and Professor Dr Zakiah Ahmad, Dean of Faculty of Engineering, UiTM, during GREENATION@UiTM launch at UiTM Shah Alam. The event was graced by YB Isnaraissah Munirah Majilis, Deputy Minister of Energy, Technology, Science, Climate Change and Environment.
About the research projects:
Biotechnology in Leachate Treatment
Biotechnology in leachate treatment is nowadays getting more popular due to its environmentally friendliness, cost effective, simplicity and reliability. Biodegradation is carried out by microorganisms, which can degrade organic compounds in leachate to carbon dioxide and sludge (under aerobic conditions) and to biogas (under anaerobic conditions). Potential microbes to be further studied include algae, fungi and bacteria.
Solid Waste Treatment
Solid waste treatment is normally associated to waste that end up in landfills. While such activity comprises one part of the process, variety of other elements is involved especially treatment techniques that can reduce volume and toxicity of solid waste. Combustion is a common waste treatment, as a means of recovering energy for electricity or heating. Gasification is a process that decompose organic waste materials using low amount of oxygen at very high temperature. Pyrolysis is similar process but uses absolutely no oxygen. Composting is another form of waste treatment which is the controlled aerobic decomposition of organic waste materials. Composting techniques include static pile composting, vermin-composting, windrow composting and in-vessel composting. Without the presence of oxygen, the process is known as anaerobic digestion. There is opportunity to explore for the development of advanced solid waste treatment such as ‘bioreactor landfill’ which uses superior microbiological processes to speed up waste decomposition.
Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) based project
In line with the announcement by the Education Ministry Malaysia, there will be three policy shifts in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education under the STEM For All (STEM4ALL) initiative. While the demand is growing for STEM related roles, the supply side is worrying as the number of students taking up STEM subjects had dropped. The three shifts are to increase the students’ interest in STEM, to expand access to learning STEM subjects, and to evolve STEM to STREAM (Science, Technology, Reading, Arts and Mathematics). Worldwide Holdings will work hand in hand with UiTM to support this latest initiative, such as setting up STEMParks for exposure to the STEM innovations of today and tomorrow.
Value Chain Management in Municipal Solid Waste (MSW)
Economic, environmental and social impacts of landfills have motivated interest in the sustainable utilization of the MSW in order to bring values. Strategic value chain is essential as it involves the overall waste generation, collection, separation, transportation, treatment, distribution, and disposal. Coordination of tactical and operational decisions including the logistics and distribution. Research and development (R&D) can be structured to build an integrated network model to maximize utilization of recyclable waste like paper, plastic, glass, and metal processed by recycling plants, and non-recyclable waste treated in waste to energy plants.