Waste collection from bring-in-sites up by 37% in 2008
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Throughout the period under review, various treatment and disposal operations have been employed in Malta to manage the solid waste generated locally. Disposal operations for non hazardous mineral waste, mainly generated by construction and demolition activities, processed an annual average of 86 per cent of the total waste managed in approved facilities from 2004 to 2008.
Waste disposed in non-hazardous public landfills has shown a fluctuating trend from 2004 to 2008, with waste amounts decreasing from 2004 to 2006, to go up again from 2007 onwards. This rise is mainly attributed to the scaling down of operations at the Sant’Antnin Waste Treatment plant due to the plant’s refurbishment. This occurrence has fuelled an increase in the proportion of municipal waste which is disposed in landfills, from 83 per cent in 2006 to 92 per cent in 2008.
The disposal of non-hazardous mineral waste has also shown a fluctuating trend from 2004 to 2008. During this period an average annual decrease of 20 per cent has been registered in the total amounts of waste disposed. The highest amount of waste disposed was of 2.76 million tonnes during 2004, and the lowest amount of 1.08 million tonnes was recorded in 2008.
Another aspect of solid waste management is the waste treatment carried out at the Sant’Antnin plant by means of material separation and composting. The figures show that after three consecutive years of increases in the total amount of waste treated, in 2007 and 2008 an abrup decrease was recorded. This occurred since refurbishment works at the plant started in 2007.
Waste incineration is a new waste management option which became available in 2008. During this year, the bulk of waste processed comprised animal carcasses originating from the civi abattoir and private slaughterhouses. This facility was the only one which processed hazardous waste in 2008, with 6 per cent of its total input being classified as such.
Separate collection of waste fractions has gained momentum during the period under review with various options being made available to the general public. By 2008, the waste amounts collected were highest in the civic amenity sites, with just under 15,000 tonnes being recorded in a single year. Increases in the different waste fractions collected from bring-in sites were registered on an annual basis since the start of the scheme in 2003. On average the rate of increase per annum from 2004 to 2008 was 45 per cent. Separated waste from households by means of the door-to-door collection of grey bags was introduced in May 2008 During 2008, 4,250 tonnes of such waste were collected, just over the amount of waste collected from bring-in sites.
In 2008, waste collected from bring-in sites was up by 37 per cent when compared to the previous year.