Waste-to-energy plants are the 'ideal solution for our environment,' Aaron Farrugia says

Environment Minister Aaron Farrugia says once Malta has a waste-to-energy facility, it will no longer have to rely on landfills 

Environment Minister Aaron Farrugia along side his Austrian counterpart Minister Leonore Gewessler
Environment Minister Aaron Farrugia along side his Austrian counterpart Minister Leonore Gewessler

Waste-to-energy plants are the ideal solution for Malta, Environment Minister Aaron Farrugia said while visiting the Spittelau plant in Vienna on Thursday.  

Farrugia was accompanied by the Austrian Minister for Climate Action, Environment, Energy and Mobility, Leonore Gewessler, who explained that the Spittelau plant is one of the best environmental solutions for Vienna, which the public holds in high regard and that attracts thousands of visitors per year. 

In 2020 WasteServ issued the pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ) for the designing, building and operation of such a facility in Malta. The plant is expected to commence operations towards the end of 2023 after a design and build phase of approximately three years. It is expected to cost €390 million to build. 

“While the waste-to-energy plant in Malta will be based on the same concept as the one in Vienna, it will be benefiting from the best technology currently on the market, which has made major advances in the past few years. Therefore Malta will no longer rely on the previous policy of landfilling. Through the ECOHIVE complex, we will have the best possible set-up to turn waste into resources,” Farrugia said. 

Farrugia said that the waste-to-energy plant in Malta would be producing around 5% of our country’s electricity while continuing to reduce our dependence on landfilling. This plant will also be providing two operative lines for 96 tonnes each. 

“Such a project could serve as an example of good practice for other countries in waste management infrastructure, the environment, and economic sustainability,” Farrugia said. 

The Minister also explained that Malta has continued to register great improvements in this area in recent months. Every day, around 37 tonnes of recyclable waste is being reintroduced into the economy. When it comes to recycling plastic, by the end of May this year, Malta had already collected twice as much as the previous annual quota.

Farrugia said that Malta is enacting various measures to combat climate change through the Low Carbon Development Strategy, which will effectively shape the long-term patterns for a carbon-neutral economy towards 2050 and contribute to our collective efforts on emission reduction at the EU and international levels.