First phase of Maghtab rehabilitation completed

The first phase of the rehabilitation of the former landfill at Maghtab has been completed, Resources Minister George Pullicino said this afternoon.

The project was handled by WasteServ Malta Ltd.

It covered an area of some  280,000 m2 and cost over €15m.

The minister said the first phase was a pilot project of a representative area of the site.

The rehabilitation included formation and capping of slopes, formation of benches (passages), construction of 2km of rubble walls in the Phase I area, with a further 1.8km to be constructed in the Phase II area, construction of 37 planting cells in the Phase I area, with over 200 additional planting cells to be included in the Phase II area, planting of trees and finishing of slopes with vegetation, including 4,000 large trees, 10,500 small trees and 20,000 large shrubs.

The project also involves construction of a large water reservoir and water culvert. The water reservoir was initially meant to have a capacity of 12,000 cubic metres but has now been enlarged to 19,000 cubic metres.

There will also be formation of reed beds which act as a natural water polishing system, as well as silt ponds designed to collect rain water.

Mr Pullicino said the project builds on previous projects related to the Magħtab dumpsite, such as the installation of a Regenerative Thermal Oxidiser and Reverse Osmosis Plant as part of the Aerial Emissions Project, through which over 99% of gases from the disused Magħtab dumpsite are being extracted and treated in a special chamber prior to safe emission into the atmosphere, while clean second class water is also being generated and used for irrigation and dust suppression purposes.

Another related project was the installation of a CHP (Combined Heat & Power generator) for the generation of electricity using landfill gases. The CHP treats gases from the Għallis and Żwejra landfills and has been functional for the past few months. The electricity generated is being fed into the national grid.

Mr Pullicino said the area will eventually become a Family Park.  WasteServ is currently preparing terms of reference related to the necessary documentation.

Meanwhile, Eurostat, quoting 2011 figures, reported today that too much garbage in Croatia, Malta and Greece ended up in dumps compared to other European Union countries.

Croatia and Malta buried 92% of their solid urban waste, Greece dumped 82%, against an EU average of 37%.

Also well below the European average were Portugal at 59%, Spain at 58% and Italy at 49%. France was among the most virtuous EU Mediterranean countries with only 28% of garbage dumped.

France incinerates 35% of garbage against the 23% European average, well above the 17% registered in Portugal, 17% in Italy, 9% in Spain, 1% in Malta.

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