Separation is easy: just do your part!

Still unsure what to take out and when? The Environment & Resources Authority (ERA) explains everything that you need to know to embrace sustainability and legal requirements.

In a world where environmental consciousness is expanding, Malta has taken a firmer approach towards sustainability with the introduction of waste separation being mandatory for everyone, ranging from households to businesses alike.  Led by the Environment and Resources Authority (ERA), this initiative aims to progress from the written objectives of the national waste management plan to concrete and implementable meaures on the ground.  By obliging everyone to dispose of waste adequately, ERA seeks to manage waste management practices, promote more waste recycling and drastically reduced mixed wasate to landfills by 2035.

The basics of waste separation

To embrace waste separation effectively, it is essential to understand the categories and guidelines for proper waste separation in Malta.  First and foremost, it is important to familiarise yourself with the national schedule for domestic waste collection with Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays dedicated for organic waste, Tuesdays and Saturdays for mixed waste and Thursdays for recyclables.  There is no waste collection on Sundays and glass is picked up from a sturdy container every first and third Friday of the month.  This schedule is applicable to all villages and towns and fees will be applicable, as from this October, to anyone who is non-compliant.

The national schedule is pushing for more organic bag collection in an effort to reduce organic waste ending up in the black bag.    Organic waste includes materials such as food scraps, garden waste such as dead leaves that are soft in nature. Organic waste is a resource, in fact, it is processed and treated at Wasteserv’s Anaerobic Digestion Plant in which biogass is produced, recovered and used to generate electricity in Malta.

Unfortunately, this is not the case if organic waste is disposed of in the black bag, which makes its fate to the landfill where it degrades and releases  greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.  This means that when organic matter is thrown in the wrong, black bag, you would be contributing to climate change.  Therefore, the black bag should only be used as the bag of last resort.  Start by prioritising the organic and recyclables, and finally if it does not classify into either of these bags, throw it with the general waste.

Going forward

Making waste separation mandatory for all marks a significant shift in our approach to waste management and towards achieving the 2035 target of reducing Malta’s municipal waste from ending up in landfills from 90% to only 10%.  Waste separation is easy, effortless and requires minimal time from our end, however, it contributes to resource conservation, energy efficiency and a cleanerenvironment.  Let’s embrace this opportunity to reshape our relationship with waste separation and do our part.

For more information, visit: https://www.wastecollection.mt/

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