Browsing 'Ministry of Municipality and Environment' News

Westin Doha

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Only a few months after opening its doors, the Westin Doha Hotel on Salwa Road has been fined by the government after health inspectors found food products “unfit for human consumption.”

Speaking to Doha News, a spokesperson for the Westin said a small bottle of juice that was one day past its expiration date was found in the fridge of the Luxe Lounge, located off the hotel’s lobby.

A notice on the Ministry of Municipality and Environment’s website dated May 18 said the Westin venue would be closed for 20 days.

The spokesperson added that while the lounge’s food and beverage counter is closed, the seating area remains open and that guests can order snacks and drinks through the hotel’s other restaurants, all of which remain open.

“The Westin Doha Hotel & Spa takes the health and safety of its guests extremely seriously,” she added.

Each month, Qatar health inspectors sanction more than a dozen venues, ranging from small eateries in the Industrial Area to high-end restaurants in five-star hotels, for food violations.

While the ministry sometimes releases photos of moldy or rotten food, it typically provides few details on the severity of the violations it finds.

Thoughts?

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Plans are underway to increase recycling efforts in Qatar and reduce the amount of garbage generated here, the minister of municipality and environment has said.

Late last year, the Central Municipal Council (CMC) called on the government to consider rolling out more recycling receptacles, particularly in public parks and along streets.

In response, the minister told the elected body in a letter that more recycling bin are on the way.

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Shabina S. Khatri / Doha News

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The statement, which was discussed at the CMC’s regular meeting this week, said officials have already installed bins in schools as well as some parks and educational institutions such as Qatar University.

The next step, which is being carried out this year, will be to put bins in government facilities and other major institutions, the CMC heard.

A third phase will be to add more recycling bins to public parks and shopping malls.

Waste in Qatar

Qatar has one of the world’s highest rates of waste production per capita, at around 1.6kg to 1.8kg each day.

This adds up to at least 7,000 tons of daily waste, with 30 percent (2,100 tons) generated by households.

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J. Zach Hollo

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The 2011-16 National Development Strategy has listed several targets to reduce the amount of waste produced, including a goal to increase recycling rates from 8 percent to up to 25 percent, according to waste management firms.

The government has made several attempts to introduce wider recycling schemes, but so far these projects have seen limited success.

Earlier last year, a government official mentioned plans to introduce a mandatory recycling scheme for households, government organizations and public spaces, but no further details were announced.

There was also talk of setting up a national recycling program in the aftermath of the 2012 COP18 climate change conference in Doha.

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Aisha Al-Misned/QatarVironment

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However, the plan, which involved placing bins in major malls and popular hangouts such as the Souq Waqif, faltered.

A survey published last year found that most of those who took part in it said they did not have access to convenient recycling facilities.

Half of all respondents said that more user-friendly facilities, such as curbside collection or drop-off depots within walking distance, would encourage more people to recycle.

Thoughts?