As from the 1st of May 2004, EU accession date, Malta had to comply with new EU directives requiring the definite closure of uncontrolled dumps like Maghtab and the development of engineered facilities for the proper disposal of Municipal Solid Waste. The Ta’ Zwejra engineered landfill was the first engineered landfill developed in Malta for the disposal of such waste in a safe and sustainable way.
The site for this new landfill was developed at the southern end of the Maghtab landfill, which investigations found to contain mainly inert waste. The same inert waste was used to cover Maghtab dump to reduce aerial emissions into the atmosphere from waste deposited on the dump. The relocation of this waste created the necessary space for the creation of the first engineered landfill, used between 2004 and 2006.
During this time WasteServ worked on establishing a long-term engineered landfill facility, namely that of Ghallis. Nonetheless, the Ta' Zwejra landfill is still considered an operational landfill.
An engineered landfill is a site where the sides and bottom are covered with impermeable liners and it has a leachate collection system to protect the surrounding environment from pollution.