Two new waste treatment plants proposed
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The government is proposing the construction of two additional waste treatment facilities, one in the north of Malta and another smaller one in Gozo. The government’s preferred sites are the Ghallis waste management site in Malta and Tal-Lewz, between Xewkija and Sannat here in Gozo.
This update to the waste management strategy originally published in 2001 was launched today by Resources Minister George Pullicino, and will be going through a public consultation process during the next 8 weeks.
An incinerator with energy recovery technology, which will treat waste which cannot be turned into compost by the treatment plants, will also be built at Delimara close to the power station.
The incinerator is expected to cost in the region of €108m and may be built as a public-private partnership. The waste treatment plants in Malta and Gozo are expected to cost €45m and €10m respectively.
Minister Pullicino said that the government was determined to ensure that all waste would, as far as possible, be treated and recycled, rather than dumped. Therefore, as a means to discourage usage of the landfill and to encourage waste separation and recycling, the gate fee at the engineered landfill will rise this year from the current 0.77c per tonne to €20 per tonne.
The minister added that additional costs incurred by local councils as a result of this measure would be paid for from the increase in the funding for the councils given by the central government this year. But the councils will retain any savings made by reducing the tonnage of waste that goes to the landfill.
The new plant in Gozo and Malta will also handle agricultural waste, including manure, which will no longer be dumped, because it harms the water table.
Minister Pullicino also pointed out that with the building of the waste treatment plant here in Gozo, municipal waste would no longer need to be transported to Malta, as was done at present.
Photo – DOI, Saviour Cassar.