The Malta Independent 4 June 2020, Thursday

Nearly 5% decrease in volume of waste generated in 2018 – NSO

Monday, 17 February 2020, 11:13 Last update: about 5 months ago

During 2018, the total volume of generated waste decreased by 4.8 per cent over 2017, the NSO said today.

The total amount of solid waste generated in Malta during 2018 amounted to just under 2.6 million tonnes; receding by 4.8 per cent over that recorded during the previous year.  Non-hazardous waste decreased by 4.3 per cent or 114,024 tonnes; mainly since no mineral waste from dredging works was generated. Likewise, hazardous waste decreased by 34.1 per cent or 16,552 tonnes as a result of lower amounts of chemical wastes and discarded vehicles.


Waste treatment registered a decrease of 5.7 per cent or 142,234 tonnes over the same period. This happened as a result of decreases of 305,000 tonnes, 4,606 tonnes and 362 tonnes in waste that was disposed at sea, pre-treated and incinerated respectively. Conversely, increases were recorded in the backfilling, recovery/recycling, and landfilling waste treatment operations amounting to 106,537 tonnes, 54,194 tonnes and 7,002 tonnes respectively.

During 2018, the Malta North Mechanical-Biological Treatment plant had a treated waste output of 71,778 tonnes; up by 28.1 per cent over that in 2017. Over 95 per cent of this waste was taken for landfilling at Għallis and abroad.  The total amount of waste disposed at the Għallis landfi ll increased by 2.4 per cent mainly due to higher amounts of sorting residues and wood waste which amounted to 12,900 tonnes and 3,189 tonnes respectively. These were partially off set by decreases in common sludges and household and similar wastes that amounted to 6,116 tonnes and 4,094 tonnes respectively.

During the year under review, the treated waste output from the Sant’ Antnin waste treatment plant decreased by 6.4 per cent. The output of glass increased by 260 tonnes, while sludges and liquid waste from waste treatment (digestate) declined by 298 tonnes. The output of sorting residues remained almost unchanged when compared to 2017.

The total waste incinerated at the Marsa thermal treatment facility amounted to 4,960 tonnes, down by 6.8 per cent over the previous year. Animal and mixed food waste constituted 88.4 per cent of the total waste treated in this facility; followed by hazardous waste at 10.6 per cent.

The processed output of waste from private waste management facilities and brokers in 2018 decreased by 11.3 per cent. Non-hazardous waste declined by 15,305 tonnes; primarily since no dredging spoils were treated. On the other hand, hazardous waste rose by 1,892 tonnes owing mainly to the increased amount of discarded vehicles and chemical wastes.

Inert waste treatment in 2018 decreased by 7.0 per cent or 144,149 tonnes. The backfilling and recycling of construction and demolition waste both advanced by 8.1 per cent and 16.7 per cent respectively.

On the other hand, the disposal at sea of inert waste fell by 71.8 per cent. In 2018, only other mineral wastes were disposed at sea, as opposed to 2017 when dredging spoils were the sole waste that was disposed in this manner.

In 2018, the separate collection of waste fractions experienced increases across all collection modes. The highest increase was recorded in civic amenity sites, at 4,558 tonnes. The organic waste collection from households, which began to cover the entire national territory as from the 31st October 2018, rose by 4,327 tonnes. Collection of dry recyclables from the grey/green bag (mixed dry recyclables and glass) and bring-in sites also increased by 4,152 tonnes and 366 tonnes respectively.


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