Riyadh: Saudi authorities, bracing for next month’s annual pilgrimage Haj season, will expand an environment-friendly initiative, an official said on Thursday.

Dubbed the “Green Haj Camp”, the project will be applied this year in more than 30 camps in Mina, the tent town outside Makkah, according to project supervisor Abdullah Bin Faisal.

“The project will be generalised to the domestic pilgrim camps due to its major benefit in developing the solid waste-management process at the holy sites,” he told Saudi online Sabq.

The project encourages pilgrims to sort out their waste into organic and solid ahead of having them recycled. The proceeds are channelled into charity works.

Bin Faisal said a workshop will be held next week with agencies concerned in order to draw up an executive plan for implementing the project in 30 pilgrim camps in Mina, where a symbolic stone-throwing ritual is performed.

“The aims are to reduce environmental harms, develop the solid waste management system and preserve the safety of the pilgrims and the service providers,” he added.

More than two million Muslims are expected to perform Haj this year.

Haj is one of Islam’s five pillars. Muslims are expected to perform it at least once in their lives if they can afford it and are physically able.