Valley rehabilitation committee collects 70 cubic metres of waste in its first days

Committee set up by the Environment Ministry to oversee the cleaning of Malta's valleys have collected 'seven trucks and four large skips-worth' of waste in its first week

The committee set up by the Environment Ministry to oversee the cleansing and rehabilitation of Malta’s valleys has collected 70 cubic metres of waste in its first week of operation, equivalent to “seven trucks and four large skips-worth”, according to a ministry spokesman.

Last month, the ministry announced that it would be setting up an inter-ministerial committee to oversee the “cleaning and rehabilitation” of several valleys across the island, with the first phase of the initiative focusing on Wied is-Sewda in H’Attard, and a part of Wied ic-Cawsli in Qormi.

The spokesman said the valleys were selected on the basis of the amount of rubbish that had accumulated in them, as well as the extent to which the rubbish was obstructing water ways, adding that in some cases this was resulting in flooding into farmers’ fields nearby.

The committee is composed of representatives from the government’s waste management company WasteServ, the Cleansing Department, PARKS, responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of public spaces, and the Valley Management Unit, in conjunction with the respective local councils. It is being headed by Herman Grech from PARKS.

The committee’s brief, in addition to cleansing valleys considered to be a priority, would also be for the regular maintenance of valleys.

“The idea is for the government to be able to collect rubbish from these valleys and ensure that they remain clean once it happens,” said the spokesman, who pointed out that the initiative was not simply an “ad hoc exercise”.

He said it would be taking a structured approach and would be prioritising valleys that were in need of “immediate attention”. The committee would also be monitoring valleys and ensuring they are well maintained, the spokesman said. 

In this regard, the ministry was asking for the public’s cooperation in keeping valleys as clean as possible and to put an end to illegal dumping in the country’s valleys.

Moreover, the ministry said it aimed to have completed the cleaning of Wied ic-Cawsli, Wied Baqqiegha in Haz-Zebbug and Wied Qirda also in Haz-Zebbug by the end of November, with the intention of complementing the ministry’s afforestation project, that aims to have planted some 8,000 trees by the end of 2017.

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