Malta Is Europe’s Worst Recycler

Only 6.7% of waste is recycled in Malta, even though there has been a recent push towards better waste management. This figure unsurprisingly makes them the worst recyclers in the EU, where the average recycling rate is 45%. What’s even more worrying is that their biggest landfill site, in Maghtab, will be full in under 2 years’ time.

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Why the low rate?

Malta is a small nation and recovery and recycling of waste is not a profitable prospect for many businesses. The Environment Minister admitted that the nation has a long way to go if they are to meet the EU recycling target of 50% by 2020, and added that efforts to improve the recycling rate will be introduced in the coming months.

What is the answer?

The Environment Minister said that recycling would become compulsory under new waste legislation that is currently being drafted.

The Circular Economy Act will require by law, that people separate recyclable, organic and general waste streams. The legislation will be opened up to a public consultation in the new year.

Ministers have indicated that the government is keen to make considerable reforms to waste management legislation. As well as the new recycling laws, a new littering act is being drafted to tackle the problem of too much waste being discarded and not enough being recycled.

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Every little helps

A campaign has been launched to collect milk cartons which are set to be recycled for charity. The organisers are looking to collect 50 tonnes of cartons in 6 weeks in aid of a telethon appeal, and it’s hoped that collecting the cartons will go some way to reducing the waste that is thrown away, and promoting recycling. 60 euros will be donated to charity for every tonne of cartons collected.