Get it sorted

WasteServ gives us the lowdown on proper waste separation

Our waste separation system consists of three different bags, each serving a different purpose. The white bag is for organic waste, the grey or green bag is for packaging waste, and the black bag is for non-recyclable waste. Then, there is the glass collection on every first and third Friday of the month.

Confused? Keep reading so you make sure you are separating your waste the proper way.

Let’s start with the white bag. This bag is for organic waste, such as raw and cooked food leftovers, fruit and vegetable peels, food-soiled napkins and newspapers, flowers, and leaves. Once organic waste arrives at our facility, we treat it and turn it into electricity. Every year, we generate enough electricity to power 500 houses for a whole year. To help us continue doing so, it is important not to place any food wrapping, baking paper or foil, cigarette ash, dust, wipes, and coffee pods in the white bag. These items do not belong and can wreak havoc in our processing process.

The grey or green bag is there for all of your packaging waste that is made out of plastic, paper, cardboard, or metal. But before you toss those empty tuna cans or yoghurt containers in, make sure to give them a quick rinse. This will not only prevent any lingering smells in your home but also help avoid contaminating the other items in the bag. Some of the items you can place in this bag include cooking oil bottles, detergent bottles, liquid soap containers, shampoo bottles, margarine tubs, yoghurt containers, milk cartons, magazines, empty spray cans, clean aluminium trays, and foil. Just remember to keep out the bad guys like electronic devices, sharps, batteries, and flares as these can potentially cause serious accidents and injuries to our employees once at our facilities.

While it may be tempting to throw all of your waste in this bag, the black bag is not an excuse to avoid separating your waste. This bag is for waste that cannot be recycled such as soiled aluminium foil, baking paper, candy wrappers, dirty takeaway food containers, wax paper, clingfilm, nappies, and other sanitary products. The less this bag is used, the better for the environment. 

Then, there is the door-to-door glass collection. Simply rinse your glass bottles and jars and place them in a sturdy reusable container of your choice without any caps or lids. Alternatively, you can drop them off at one of our Civic Amenity Sites or take them to our Roadshow Truck.

Yet, this is not the only waste that we generate in our homes. There is also that old mobile phone or that broken remote control car. These are classified as electronic waste and no matter how small should never be taken out for door-to-door collection. E-waste mostly consists of those devices and their parts that are battery-operated or have an electric plug. These should be taken to one of our Civic Amenity Sites or in the case of items that are not bigger than 50cm, these can also be taken to a Roadshow Truck.

Then, there is a special category of waste that requires extra care and attention as it can pose a serious risk to human health and the environment if not disposed of properly. These include cooking oil, paints (including empty paint containers), batteries, light bulbs, neon tubes, ink cartridges and toners. For this reason, these should always be taken to a Civic Amenity Site. Some of these items are also accepted at the Roadshow Truck. Expired or unwanted medicine can be taken to an authorised pharmacy, and in the case of sharps, these should always be taken to a Civic Amenity Site.

By properly separating our waste, we can make sure that as much as possible is diverted away from the landfill. While it is easy to get caught up in the whirl of everyday life, with a little bit of effort, we can make a world of difference. So, let’s all do our part and make sure that we are separating right. •

For more information visit wsm.com.mt.

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