Kuwait – soil clean-up projects

In July 2021, Lamor entered into an agreement concerning projects for soil remediation in northern and southern Kuwait in a consortium with Khalid Ali Al-Kharafi & Bros. Co. The customer of the projects is Kuwait’s national oil company Kuwait Oil Company. Two agreements were prepared for the projects, which last around five years, with one agreement relating to the operation in northern Kuwait and the other relating to the operation in southern Kuwait. The soil remediation projects were started in northern and southern Kuwait in September 2021.

An area of 114 kilometres in Kuwait was heavily contaminated when oil wells located there were destroyed in connection with the invasion of Kuwait by Iraq in 1990–1991. Oil has leaked into the soil from damaged oil wells, forming huge oil lakes in the area. The UN Compensation Commission has granted the State of Kuwait a subsidy of USD 3 billion for the remediation of the soil under the condition that the State of Kuwait establishes a monitoring programme for the area to monitor technical and financial progress in the clean-up work. The UN has stipulated that unless the remediation is started in 2021, the UN may withdraw its subsidy.

The land in northern and southern Kuwait is composed of diverse soils requiring remediation. First, there are dried-up and wet oil lakes in the area that emerged when the oil that leaked into soil formed pools. Secondly, there are heavily contaminated soil deposits in the area that were piled in order to stop the spread of oil from the damaged oil wells. Thirdly, there is soil covered with a thin tarry layer created by the fall-out from fires in the oil wells. Fourthly, there are pits in the area that were dug in order to store sea water to be used to extinguish the fire of the oil wells.

Lamor serves as the repair contractor in the projects, while Khalid Ali Al-Kharafi & Bros. Co. serves as the building contractor. Lamor will initially determine the degree of contamination in the area and create a plan for remediating the area. After this, Lamor will transport the polluted soil to a treatment facility where the soil is cleaned. After cleaning, the soil can be relocated to the area, which can then be opened again for public use. 

Lamor’s selection of methods to be used in the project includes bioremediation and soil washing in the case of soil remediation. The two aforementioned projects are expected to be completed on or around the end of 2026.