Waste Management

Effluent Management

Palm oil Mill Effluent (POME) is the primary organic waste output from the production of palm oil. Discharging untreated effluent into water streams is strictly illegal and may cause considerable environmental problems – and adversely affect life underwater.

We maintain robust management systems to ensure all our mills and refinery operations are equipped with Palm Oil Mill Effluent Treatment Systems (POMETS) and Industrial Effluent Treatment Systems (IETS) that support the management of waste and comply with national environmental standards. We have also invested in training our employees to manage effluent and their treatment systems.

Read more about our efforts on effluent management in our Sustainability Report 2019


Composts can be produced through a combination of the two largest constituents of mill wastes, POME and Empty Fruit Bunch (EFB), as well as other by-products, namely decanter cake and boiler ash. Composts are applied in estates as soil conditioner to ameliorate estates’ soil. Sime Darby Plantation (SDP) began composting as part of its mill waste management in 2004.

Project Metamorphosis

At our estate operations, our waste inventory showed that fertiliser bags were thrown away and were ending up in landfills each year. In collaboration with a plastic-ware manufacturer, we developed technology to upcycle discarded fertiliser bags into plastic chairs. This initiative reduces the number of bags that end up in the landfill, supports our waste management efforts and protects the ocean (SDG 14 - Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development).

The Metamorphosis project was awarded the Best Innovation in Sustainability, EUROPA AWARDS 2019. Since 2019, we have implemented the project in two estates, produced 35 chairs, and collected over 8,500 kg of bags

Reducing Plastic Waste

Every company has a role to play in reducing the use of plastics. Some estimates show that almost 13 million tonnes of plastic end up in the ocean each year - to assess our role in averting this crisis, we conducted an inventory of single-use plastic waste at our SDP Head Office, Ara Damansara in 2017. We recorded 325,830 pieces of single-use plastic equivalent to 4,522.12 kg in a year.

We have since developed the No-Single Use Plastic initiative aimed at reducing plastic waste and the consumption of single-use plastics. Through communication campaigns, lunch and learning opportunities, and a replacement of the bottles and food containers we use, we have successfully reduced our use of plastics by 1,064kg.
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