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Despite significant changes in the category and volume of waste, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) still manages refuse the same way it did decades ago. Before 1975, waste generators were responsible for collecting and disposing of nonhazardous solid waste (NSW). The KSA later set up the Ministry of Municipalities and Rural Affairs (MOMRA) in 1975 as a result of the oil boom. One of the initial tasks of MOMRA was to manage and develop NSW system. In addition to management, MOMRA also distributed waste bins throughout the KSA and hired waste haulers to be responsible for NSW. As I will explain in greater detail later, the NSW has not undergone any changes or improvements in the last forty-seven years.

This paper’s analysis identifies significant deficiencies in the KSA’s NSW law, underscoring the urgent need for the KSA to adopt advanced waste management solutions, and look to the UAE as a source of ideas for improving the KSA waste management system. As grounds for this analysis, the paper begins with a general overview of NSW waste management approaches and explains how comparative legal analysis informs the paper’s recommendations.