1. to allow hunting in spring of turtle dove and quail ONLY
2. to protect adequately all its nature reserves
3. to ensure adequate administrative capacity and sufficient legal instruments to curb illegal hunting
4. to afford protection to birds in need of special protection
None of this has happened yet. All we have in practice is hunters still free to hunt whatever they like in spring. BirdLife also noted that several points of the current legislation are not in line with the common position negotiated with the EU, including
1. trapping of species other than those agreed
2. trapping of finches in spring
3. hunting at sea in spring
4. hunting with sea-craft far exceeding 18 knots
In Gozo, hunting goes totally unchecked. The police there are slow to react. Illegal equipment like vertical nets and birdcallers are common throughout the countryside. BirdLife asked: Has the government given up on Gozo?
Trapping sites should be registered, but the government has not done this yet. BirdLife asked: How many trapping sites are on public land? How many enforcement notices have been served on illegal trapping site?
There are illegal trapping sites near and even right on top of megaliths and archaeological sites. Trappers damage the sites irreparably. BirdLife asked: How come such people are tolerated?
Surveys show that over 60% of the Maltese want tougher action against hunters. BirdLife asked: Whose interests is the government protecting?
Public land leased by the Lands Department for agricultural purposes is being rented out for hunting and trapping. BirdLife asked: What is Lands doing about this?
The government is not willing to make a move. There is no co-ordination between departments, ministries and sections. There are police officers willing to take up the challenge, but the authorities' standard moan is that you can't put a policeman with every hunter. If the government has made regulations that are unenforceable, it has only itself to blame, and it isn't as though BirdLife didn't forewarn the authorities of this.
Wiehed mill-oqsma li fih il-Gvern Nazzjonalista falla, kien bla dubju ta' xejn il-qasam tal-ambjent. Matul is-snin li ilu jmexxi l-pajjiz il-PN, ittiehdu mizuri hziena li bihom l-ambjent Malti ha' daqqa ta' harta. Imma fl-istess waqt, minhabba l-fatt li impatt negattiv fuq l-ambjent kulhadd jista jarah, il-Gvern Nazzjonalista ha mizuri zghar, kosmetici u ta' malajr sabiex jiprova jghatti ftit mill-kruha ta' dan l-abbuz fuq l-ambjent Malti. Donnu meta wiehed jitkellem mal-Gvern fuq l-ambjent qisu qed jitkellem mal-hajt. Tant saru appelli lill-Gvern sabiex jiehu din is-sitwazzjoni bis-serjeta li bilfors ikollok tasal ghall-konkluzjoni li l-Gvern ma jridx jaf. Wara kollox Dr. Fenech Adami stess qal li l-ambjent mhux prijorita ghall-Gvern tieghu allura b'attegjament bhal dan bilfors li l-ambjent f'Malta jmur lura. X'hinu l-ambjent? L-ambjent huwa prattikament dak kollu li ghandna madwarna. Sigar, bahar, arja, toroq, indafa, bini, karozzi, hsejjes . . . kollox jaghmel parti
Il-fatti li ser ingib ghall-attenzjoni taghkom ma tantx jista jhallulkom dubji dwar kemm verament hemm bahar jaqsam bejn dak li jghidu u jweghdu l-PN u dak li fil-fatt jaslu biex jaghmlu. Daqqa jitkellmu mod imbaghad tarahom jaghmlu bil-maqlub. Tinsewx li l-ambjent mhux xi propjeta ta' xi individwu, ghaqda jew partit imma l-ambjent huwa ta' kulhadd minghajr l-ebda distinzjoni. Ghalhekk jekk l-ambjent jitkerrah, dak ikun sar ghad-detriment tal-Maltin kollha. Allura fuq dan m'ghandiex tidhol il-politika partiggjana . . . suppost! Imma meta nigu sabiex naraw x'ghamel Gvern Nazzjonalista insibu li b'mod vili, b'mod li ma jaghmel l-ebda sens, ittiehdu decizjonijiet li per ezempju progetti ambjentali li bdew taht amministrazzjoni Laburista ta' Dr. Sant gew imwaqqfa u mitluqa sakemm intesa kollox. L-iskop ta' din il-pagna f'din il-web site huwa appuntu sabiex ahna ma ninsewx.
Nghid ukoll li l-ambjent innifsu mhux xi responsabilta tal-Gvern biss. Hadd m'ghandu jahseb li huwa l-Gvern biss responsabbli mill-ambjent. Ir-responsabilta jgorra kulhadd. Imma mhux kulhadd ghandu l-istess ammont ta' responsabilta ghalhekk l-aktar li jgorr htija tas-sitwazzjoni huwa l-Gvern innifsu.
Nibdew naraw x'sar.
Ezempji ta' abbuz fl-ambjent. F'Marzu 1990 kien hemm mhux inqas
Fl-1990 ir-Residents Associations Federation giet ikkwotata li qalet li hawn, “total chaos in building laws enforcement.”
F'Gunju 1992, Il-Gens qaltilna, “il-gvern ippublika dak li qed isejjahlu bhala rapport nazzjonali dwar l-ambjent taghna... Ir-rapport ma tantx jilghab bil-kliem... Il-fatti u c-cifri li jaghti juri realta li tikkonferma li pajjizna sejjer lura f'li ghandu x'jaqsam ma' l'ambjent. Il-wirt ta' pajjizna qed ikun wisq impoggi fil-genb... Rigward l-iskart ma nistghux nifhmu kif il-gvern jaf fejn qed jintrema bla permess u ma jiehux passi konkreti biex dan l-abbuz sfaccat jieqaf darba ghal dejjem...l-ambjent ta' madwarna jinsab fi krizi.” Dan kien fl-1992, issa li ghaddew dawn is-snin kollha l-ambjent Malti GHADU FI KRIZI. Allura t-tort ta' min hu?
Fl-Lulju 1992 residenti f'San Pawl il-bahar wara zmien twil jilmentaw mall-Ministeru ghall-Ambjent dwar il-qaghda hazina fejn jghixu spiccaw hargu huma bl-ixkupi, pali u bramel biex inaddfu t-toroq. Dan wara li x-xahar ta' qabel residenti ta' Triq Arsnell hargu jaghmlu l-istess. On The Dot ta' The Times kien irraporta hekk, “the residents of
Tiftakru kif ghal snin shah il-funtana tat-Tritoni l-belt kienet thalliet abbandunata? Kellhom ikunu l-haddiema
F'Jannar 1993 The Times iddiskriviet il-belt kapitali, “
L-anqas zoni residenzjali “puliti” ma helsuha mit-telqa ambjentali. F'April 1993 residenti tas-Swieqi spiccaw hallsu huma stess biex it-triq taghhom titnaddaf.
F'Settembru 1993 The Times fakkritna fid-differenza enormi li hemm meta wiehed jasal
F'Ottubru 1993, Henry Frendo kiteb fin-Nazzjon u qal, “putirjal... Qisu suq, qisu pont. Konfuzjoni nobis. Gegwigija. Ding. Traskuragni. Rassa. Lanqas pavimentar. Bankini bil-hofor. Xehta ta' belt li m'ghadiex li kienet, mitluqa, fgata, dabbar rasek u suq 'l hemm. Ejja ha mmorru. ... Sur Bondin, hallik mill-knejjes, dur dawra ma' din.” (Ghal Ray Bondin kien qieghed jghid).
Herbet Naudi (Kandidat Nazzjonalista ghal-elezzjoni tal-kunsill lokali tas-Sliema) “tas-Sliema sa ftit taz-zmien ilu kienet belt sabiha qabel ma gew il-krejnijiet u l-bulldozers, iwaqqghu l-palazzi, vilel u djar sbieh li kienet thaddan din il-belt.” Dan kitbu fin-Nazzjon f'Marzu 1994.
Ma ninsewx ir-residenti ta' Marsaxlokk. “the people of Marsaxlokk are already suffering from the siting of the power station, which has reduced the quality of their lifestyles”. – Dan kien messagg mill-Marsaxlokk Residents Association, f'The Times f'Mejju 1994
U f'Awwissu 1994, The Sunday Times qaltilna, “... Roads leading to the major hotels present one eyesore after another, with piles of rubbish, heaps of scrap iron, and broken pavements littering the way... And talking of the water, it has become the exception, rather than the rule for this to be clean and pleasant.. Sewage overflow in Bugibba, Qawra and
F'Settembru 1994, Fisheye ta' Il-gens qaltilna, “l-anqas tmur il-bahar ma tista issa bid-drenagg li hawn.”
F'Dicembru tal-1994 Francis Zammit Dimech kien ivvinta wahda kbira. Qal, “popular bathing beaches in
Aktar serju kien ir-rapport ta' the Times f'Settembru 1995 fejn qalet, “the neglected state of Wied Qirda in Zebbug may have caused the floods which left a Qormi man dead during record rainfalls on Wednesday night.” Dak li jigri meta ma tiehux hsieb l-ambjent . . . jaf iwassal ghal tragedja.
Fl-1998 Francis Zammit Dimech li kien responsabbli mill-ambjent qal li kien ser inaddaf lil
F'Lulju 1999 il-Greenpeace ikkritikat lill-Gvern u The Times qaltilna, “Greenpeace Mediterranean outraged at the government’s clear dismissiveness of any consultation on a waste management strategy.” Issa l-Greenpeace mhux xi ghaqda li tarmiha. Min hu midhla tal-ambjent dinji jaf xi tfisser il-Greenpeace.
F'Awwissu 1999, On The Dot ta' The Times ried idahhakna meta qal, “the government is utterly inefficient in dealing with the dirt problem. The minister responsible for public cleansing should resign.” U issa ma tarax li l-ministru mhux ser jirrizenja. Anke jekk
F'Settembru 1999, il-Birdlife
Fi Frar tal-2000 il-Ministru tat-Turizmu Michael Refalo kien qal li jaccetta l-kritika dwar it-toroq dizastruzi specjalment dawk vicin lukandi 5 star. Allura? Sar xi haga b'daqshekk? Mhux imharbtin ghadhom? Il-poplu fatti jrid mhux paroli.
F'Mejju 2000, The Malta Independent on Sunday qaltilna, “it is obvious that today the main focus of criticism on the terrible state of the environment should be targeted at the government.” U hekk qed naghmel f'din il-pagna.
U f'Settembru 2000, The Times qaltilna, “the prime minister has not offered any solutions to this major (environmental) problem facing the country and seems to be adopting a defeatist attitude.” Nahseb kulhadd kellu ghajnejh f'wiccu biex jara li l-Gvern ceda u halla s-sitwazzjoni tahrablu
Is-sena 2001 imbaghad kienet ikkaratterizzata
U nibqghu f'Awwissu u f'rapport fil-gazzetta Malta Today qrajna li, “asthma and other respiratory conditions among the people of Fgura and Zejtun are among the highest in the world and it is environmentally linked.” Mhux aktar l-ambjent jidher ikrah biss imma qieghed imarrad lin-nies ukoll. The Malta Independent on Sunday kompliet, “bad state of the environment in
Imbaghad f'Settembru 2001 editorjal ta' The Times kellu jammetti, “let’s face it, we must be one of the dirtiest countries in the world.” Kieku jien kont inzid bicca u nghid . . . and we have one of the most incompetent Governments ever to run a country. Ovvjament din it-tieni sentenza The Times ma kitbithiex.
Kulhadd jaf bil-progett kbir ta' Bugibba tal-gvern Laburista. Kulhadd jaf ukoll kemm tjieb l-ambjent fl-inhawi, kien tibdil mill-qiegh. Sfortunatament telghu n-Nazzjonalisti u Bugibba abbandunawha. F'Ottubru 2001 kiteb Winston Zahra (Managing Director tal-Islands Group) u qal, “why Bugibba seafront is left to rot is beyond my comprehension.” Kellu ragun, ma taghmilx sens li tabbanduna progett bhal dak, forsi minhabba l-ghira ghax il-progett sar
F'Dicembru 2001 kelna aktar drenagg ifur din id-darba f'Wied Incita.
Forsi jkun hemm
Mela rajna li l-Gvern Nazzjonalista waqqaf progetti mibdija
Imbaghad il-Gvern iddecieda li jorbot il-Ministeru ghall-Ambjent mall-MEPA (Planning Authority qabel). The Malta Independent on Sunday qaltilna ghaliex din id-decizjoni kienet zbaljata. “the result of this merger means that in effect
Fi Frar 2002 il-President Ezekuttiv ta' Din l-Art Helwa qal, “
F'April 2002, The Malta Independent taghtna rigal sabih. Ritratti li juru l-mizbliet kullimkien madwar
F'Gunju 2002, The Times qaltilna li, “the outright shabiness in so many places is unbelievable.”
U d-dahla ghal-belt? Il-poplu kollu jaf x'dizastru ghandna qisek diehel go xi suq f'pajjiz Gharbi u mhux diehel fil-belt kapitali ta'
F'Lulju 2002, Dr. Zammit Dimech kompla jdahhak. The Times irrapurtatu li qal, “the government’s message was that it was committed to cleaning every corner of the islands.” Araw naqra x'vilta ta' kliem! Il-hin kollu jghadduna biz-zmien.
L-ghada stess, The Times donnha biex iggibu f'sensih qalet, “the environment … one glaring failure on the part of the government.”
Inkomplu fuq id-drenagg din id-darba f'Marsamxett. The Times f'Awwissu 2002 habbret, “sewage seeps into the sea for months at Marsamxett harbour in
Nigu ghal-bahar. The Malta Independent f'Awwissu habbret, “an unpublished government-commissioned environment report shows that
F'Settembru 2002 The Times qalet, “why does traffic belch heavy smoke everywhere – but everywhere with impunity. There must be a reason for the police and wardens to be so helpless in this area. Lack of will somewhere at the top? . . .there is also need on the government’s part to concentrate more (on environment) action than on rhetoric.” Jahasra The Times qed tghazaq fl-ilma!!
Inkredibbli kienet l-ahbar li harget f'Ottubru 2002 li tghid li kien hemm aktar
It-turisti kemm il-darba lmentaw dwar li
F'Lulju 2003, il-President ezekuttiv ta' Din l-Art Helwa ghamel rimarka li ghalija hija wahda mill-aktar iebsin imma li turi l-verita tal-fatti f'din il-gawhra ta' pajjiz li ghandna. Martin Scicluna qal, “sadly, this administration has been comatose in its whole treatment of the environment.”
Kellna l-President tar-Repubblika li f'Awwissu 2003 zar il-forti Sant Iermu l-belt u ma ghaggeb lil hadd meta The Times ikkwotatu li qal li l-post hu “a national embarrassment and a national disaster”.
F'editorjal jahraq u canfira wahda lill-Gvern Nazzjonalista, The Times f'Awwissu 2003 kienet qalet, “rather than telling us that ‘the country needs to be kept in the clean state it deserves’ it would have been more proper had he (Ninu Zammit) on behalf of himself and of his government, first apologised to the full for neglecting their duty of seeing to the island’s urgent environmental needs.” Inthom smajtu b'xi apologija? U l-anqas ser tisimghuha!!
The Gozo Times f'Awwissu 2003 gibdet l-attenzjoni dwar id-drenagg f'Ghawdex meta qalet, “raw sewage continues to be pumped from an outfall into the sea close to one of Gozo’s most beautiful beaches, San Blas in spite of promises by the government to eliminate this environmental problem by the beginning of summer.” Kif diga ghidt li weghdiet biss saru u jkun hemm min jemminhom dawn il-weghdiet!!
Imbaghad xi nghidu ghal-bravura tal-Gvern Nazzjonalista li jaghmel zewg mizbliet hdejn it-tempji tal-Imnajdra u Hagar Qim? Mhux ta' b'xejn in-nies tal-inhawi qamu fuq taghhom dwar din id-decizjoni zbaljata. U meta jkollok membru parlamentari Nazzjonalista wkoll johrog qatta bla habel kontra din il-mizura oxxena bilfors tistaqsi lilek innifsek, “imma l-Gvern Nazzjonalista jrid jeqred l-ambjent?” U kemm ghaqdiet hargu kontra din id-decizjoni?
F'Settembru 2003, The Times iddeskriviet dak li qieghed ihoss il-poplu. Qalet, “what has led to so much discontent this summer – far more than in any other summer – is the sheer neglect of the environment, something that is quite visible to all.” Hekk hu, telqa totali . . . kullimkien.
F'Settembru wkoll, The Malta Independent irrapurtat dwar is-sitwazzjoni fl-inhawi taz-zona industrijali ta' Kordin. Qalet, “Several companies operating out of the Corradino Industrial Estate have voiced their complaints about the shabby state of their estate, to the extent that they are embarrassed to host foreign clients at their factories. They said the estate was in dire need of a facelift, with vegetation five feet high, rubbish deposited outside skips and also a car abandoned in the area since February. . . . representatives of various companies operating out of the industrial estate said that the area has not been cleaned for several months, adding that they are embarrassed to bring foreigners to the area.” X'taghmel? Tibki? Tidhak? Imbaghad il-Gvern jghidlek li mhux facli jgib investiment barrani.
Tiftakruh il-kaz tal-vapur Norvegiz Kronviken? Il-Greenpeace kienet qalet li kien tnehha materjal TOSSIKU
F'Settembru 2003, waqt mass meeting fuq il-Fosos, Dr. Fenech Adami kien qal, “Hu facli hafna li wiehed jindividwa l-problemi ambjentali u jitkellem dwar kemm hemm bzonn li jsiru affarijiet biex dan isir ahjar izda kulhadd jehtieg jifhem li l-Gvern ikollu jimxi bil-prijoritajiet tieghu.” Din ammissjoni cara daqs il-kristall li minkejja l-problema enormi ambjentali li ghandna, il-Gvern Nazzjonalista ma jhossx li ghandu jaghti prijorita lill-ambjent. U min ibaghti? Il-poplu kollu Laburisti u Nazzjonalisti, kulhadd.
Fl-2003 sar stharrig mill-MHRA (Malta Hotels and Restaurants Association) fost it-turisti. Irrizulta li 160,000 turist ikkritikaw l-ambjent. Mhux wiehed u tnejn ilmentaw imma 160,000!!!! Araw x'riklam ghandha
Tridu certifikat tal-inkompetenza tal-Gvern fuq l-ambjent. Bhas-soltu inhalli f'idejn in-Nazzjonalisti stess. The Times qaltilna, “Last summer was perhaps one of the worst we had for many, many years in terms of the sheer environmental neglect so evident throughout the island. But the government did not seem to be in any mood to take notice of the harsh criticism levelled at it from all quarters.” Irrizenja xi hadd? Tkecca xi hadd? Sajf Malti 2003 mimli hmieg.
Wara l-budget ghas-sena 2004, il-Greenpeace Mediterranean qalet, “The budget lacks true commitment to the environment.”
F'Mejju imbaghad kien imiss lil Dr. Arnold Cassola li qal, “
F'Gunju 2004, r-residenti ta' Triq Qanpiena f'Birkirkara lmentaw ma' The Malta Independent hekk, “Residents living in Qanpiena Street, Birkirkara, have complained to The Malta Independent about the state of their street, saying it is like living in a "second Maghtab.”
F'Lulju 2004 kellna konferma ohra tal-apatija tal-Gvern Nazzjonalista. “To all intents and purposes, it does look as if the government is either blind to the general environment situation or is absolutely incapable of dealing with it. How else can one explain the sheer neglect so evident in so many public places?” Dan kien editorjal tat-2 ta' Lulju.
“If anyone is to blame for the sorry state of
Fis-27 ta' Lulju il-Malta Employers Association qalet, “the government had no coherent environmental policy.” – The Times 27.7.2004
F'Lulju wkoll, ezattament fis-16 tax-xahar, The Times kompliet dwar ir-raqda tal-Gvern, “The sheer inability of the government to tackle the problem of keeping the island clean.” qalet fl-editorjal.
U fl-1 t'Awwissu The Malta Independent on Sunday taghtna twissija, “The country's environment is now a big problem which affects (not can affect, but is already affecting) our own health, the way the country looks and the way it is perceived by its own residents and by its visitors.”
L-istat tal-ambjent vicin il-Hilton f’Dicembru rrapurtat
U Tumas Group jghidu, “entrepreneurs in
F’Gunju 2005 kien imiss lil Din l-Art Helwa li permezz tal-President Ezekuttiv taghha qalet, “
F’rapport inkwetanti ferm fil-Malta Today sirna nafu li wara li l-Maghtab “inghalqet”, qeghda tizdied il-hazna ta’ materjal tossiku madwar il-pajjiz. Fejn qabel dan il-materjal kien imur f’post wiehed, issa dan il-materjal perikoluz qieghed jinzamm f’diversi zoni ta’
F’Settembru 2005, The Times f’wiehed mill-editorjali taghha kkonfermat, “the island today is dirty and looks as scruffy as ever. … It is simply a disgrace that the country's environment has been allowed to deteriorate at such a rapid rate. … the situation is getting worse than ever.”
Fi Frar 2006 hareg rapport jismu The State of the Environment Report 2005. Di-ve news taghtna fuq fuq dettalji inkwetanti li hargu
F’Marzu 2006, il-kwistjoni tal-fish farms li l-gvern ried li jitpoggew f’Wied il-Ghajn waslet biex anke l-GRTU tohrog kontra dan il-pjan, “The General Retailers and Traders Union (GRTU) has urged the Government to withdraw the proposal for the relocation of fish-farms in the sea off Marsascala, saying that this project does not make sense economically or environmentally.” L-ahbar ta’ di-ve news tas-6 ta’ Marzu.
Nibqghu f’Marzu fejn Daphne Caruana Galizia f’artiklu taghha f’The Malta Independent qalet, “The streets are still dirty, the roads are worse than they ever were (but not as bad as they will be next year), nothing works as it should, roads and squares are ripped up in the core of the larger towns, causing chaos for weeks if not months, the rubbish collection system is less efficient than it was 15 years ago, the flowering plants so enthusiastically put down in the early years have long since withered and died.”
Wara li l-Gvern Nazzjonalista iddecieda li ma jwaqqafx il-kacca fir-rebbiegha, The Times ghamlet stharrig online li wera: “More than 80 per cent of the respondents to a The Times online poll, do not agree with the government's decision to allow spring hunting to go on. The poll, which lasted nearly three days, asked: "Do you agree with the decision not to ban spring hunting given the bird flu scare?" A total 83.15 per cent of respondents said they did not agree with the decision and the remainder said they did. Those who did not agree with the decision included hunters.”
Fil-bidu t’April imbaghad qrajna rapport ta’ The Times li kkwota studju li sar dwar il-kwalita tal-arja f’Malta. L-istudju jismu Fine Dust Emissions From Soft Stone Quarrying In Malta u li qal fost affarijiet ohra: “Harmful fine dust particles produced by soft stone quarries amounts to at least 1,200 tonnes a year … This works out roughly at a two-litre bottle full of what is technically known as particulate matter (PM10) for every person living in Malta annually. … Fine dust particles are a major component of air pollution that threatens both health and the environment as it is among the most harmful of all air pollutants. When inhaled, these particles evade the respiratory system's natural defences and lodge deep in the lungs. … the fine dust emission rate from the 67 active soft stone quarries stood at 11,500 milligrammes per square metre a day. The international guideline ranges between 100-300 milligrammes per square metre a day - meaning that, at best, the emission measured was 38 times more than the highest international recommended level.”
Fl-10 ta’ Gunju 2006 saret protesta il-belt favur l-ambjent
Fl-istess jum, The Times habbret li skond rapport mahrug fi Brussel, il-maggoranza tal-bajjiet fis-sajf tal-2005 ma kienux tal-livell ta’ ndafa tal-Unjoni Ewropea.
F’Ottubru imbaghad faqqa l-iskandlu dwar il-kaccaturi fejn wara li xi kaccaturi ghamlu protesta quddiem Kastilja, harget ordni lill-pulizija biex meta jaqbdu lil xi hadd jikser il-ligi tal-kacca ma jiehdux passi imma jiehdu nota ta’ dak li jkun gara. Dan l-iskandu gab l-ghadab ta’ hafna. Nibdew bil-Birdlife Malta li The Times irrapurtat hekk, “BirdLife Malta is outraged at the fact that the police were given instructions to temporarily refrain from taking legal action against hunters, which effectively puts the Birds Directive “on hold”. An internal memorandum signed by the Administrative Law Enforcement inspector, seen by The Times, instructs officers to file a report but not to immediately arraign individuals who trap quails, golden plovers, turtle doves and thrushes. The police are also instructed to issue no charges against those hunting at sea with engines capable of developing speeds higher than 18 km/hour. According to BirdLife, both these instructions go against the EU directive, which places restrictions on hunting and trapping to maintain the populations of wild birds at levels determined by ecological, scientific and cultural requirements. The memo was issued last Saturday, on the same day a group of hunters gathered outside the Prime Minister's office at
The Times kompliet fis-17 t’Ottubru hekk, “To err is human but to persist in error is diabolical. And that is what the government is doing with regard to the police memo issued a few days ago instructing officers to file a report but not press charges as yet against hunters and trappers caught contravening certain sections of the hunting law. One can only wonder whether the government, which says it believes so much in consultation and the dissemination of information, would have ever informed the public about this latest unexplainable move had The Times not published the news. The way both the government - through the Office of the Prime Minister - and the Nationalist Party in power - through the office of its general secretary - have reacted to approaches by The Times indicate they would rather the memo had remained a confidential matter. … The Times newsroom followed up the story and contacted the Office of the Prime Minister, the police and the three political forces, that is, the PN, the Labour Party and Alternattiva Demokratika. The reaction by the Office of the Prime Minister, the police and the PN was as obscure as the memo itself. Questions sent to the police unsurprisingly remained unanswered. One is justified in translating that as meaning: What has been said has been said. The rest is beyond us. Efforts to speak to the PN general secretary proved futile. It is evident he preferred to remain mum. … the police may not have been told not to uphold the law or not to book defaulters. They were, however, ordered to take note and sit and wait. Is this the PN's new style of government? … Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi, who, it must be said, has had to face an uphill battle ever since he took the helm of the party and the country, needs to take the bull by the horns when the going gets tough. Dr Gonzi surely realises that real power comes from the people and not from those around him, whether on the Cabinet table or at Pietà.”
Fi Frar 2007, Dr. Harry Vassallo ma felahx izjed. Kiteb, “Vote George get Lorry? Lorry Sant was a pathetic wimp compared to George. Lorry Sant only engineered the destruction of
F’Awwissu 2007, The Malta Independent on Sunday qalet, “There is neglect all over the place, beginning at City Gate and ending anywhere you want. There could be a constituency waiting out there for a no nonsense government that brings law and order back, and which brings back some pride to a downtrodden country and people.”
Imbaghad f’Ottubru 2007 il-GRTU kixfet l-apatija tal-Gvern biex ihares l-ambjent tal-belt
Fl-istess xahar, hareg Carmel Cacopardo ex Ufficjal tal-Partit Nazzjonalista li ma qadx idur mal-lewza. F’The Times kiteb, “Vision statements are not realistic when they relegate the environment to an add-on. This is what the PN document does notwithstanding the inclusion of the word “environment” in its title. The PN vision is hence squinted. It needs to be substantially revised and realigned with environmental values. Only then will talking of achieving excellence make sense.”
F’Novembru, The Times irrapurtat lill-Alternattiva; Alternattiva Demokratika has blamed the government for the environmental damage that is being caused by the Red Palm Weevil, which attacks palm trees. … “Alternattiva Demokratika cannot but put the blame on the government for the way it is handling afforestation and tree protection in the
F’Dicembru, The Times irrapurtat lid-Deputat Parlamentari Nazzjonalista Franco Galea li fil-parlament iddeskriva s-sit tal-White Rocks b’mod car hafna. “The prime site White Rocks complex has become a prime dump that presents a danger to families who go there for walks and barbeques, Nationalist MP Franco Galea has told Parliament. Speaking in an adjournment speech late on Wednesday, he said the White Rocks complex was not so white any longer as several parts had been blackened by fire. He was concerned, Mr Galea said, about the way how children were being allowed to play in ruins which were clearly dangerous, among drug syringes and rusting washing machines, not to mention what went on in the cars. “As far as I know, according to law, property owners have to close off their properties, especially when they are dangerous. So why is the state not enforcing its own rules? The way the White Rocks complex has been turned into a dump is unacceptable... there are rats everywhere, as well as dead animals and all sort of rubbish, and yet people go there for their walks in a dangerous and dirty environment.” Mr Galea said he had gone to the complex and would have fallen a height of one storey from what seemed to have been a bridge had he not been careful. He could only imagine the danger posed to children intent only on chasing each other. This, Mr Galea said, was a tragedy waiting to happen and those responsible needed to act with urgency. He hoped that another prime site, Hal Ferh, would not be allowed to deteriorate to the state of the White Rocks complex. But a danger close to Hal Ferh already existed at the former Riviera Martinque Hotel, overlooking
Nigu issa ghas-sena 2008. Ma domnix wisq nistennew rapporti li jikkonfermaw l-apatija tal-Gvern Nazzjonalista dwar l-ambjent. Fit-23 ta’ Jannar di-ve news irraporta x’qal il-Kunsill Lokali tal-Floriana, “The Floriana Local Council has on Wednesday expressed its disappointment over the current state of the Mall gardens, which six months after being smartened is in a state of total neglect. It condemned the fact that after a few days from the inauguration of the project, parts of the gardens’ lightning started to go off, and now all the garden has been in total darkness for weeks. Furthermore, the Local Council said that only a few flowers and plants have been planted in the garden, only in view of the inauguration ceremony, and since then nothing else has been planted.” Kollox ta’ kafkaf, igri w’gerri ghac-cerimonji imbaghad jithalla kollox ghal riehu.
Imbaghad f’Lulju The Times irrapurtat lill-Kummissjoni Ewropea hekk, “
Xahar wara, f’Awwissu, l-istess The Times qalet, “Good money is spent on advertising but not enough attention has been paid to tackle the rampant neglect so evident in many areas all over the island.”
U issa jmiss is-sena 2009. MaltaToday tal-1 ta' Frar habbret, “A staggering 1.25 million tonnes of construction waste has been dumped in an offshore “spoil ground” located northeast of
F’Novembru imbaghad, The Times kixfet sors iehor ta’ tniggiz ambjentali … duhhan mhux iffiltrat mill-power station tal-Marsa. Kitbet hekk, “A boiler at the Marsa power station was pumping unfiltered emissions into the sky for seven months after its filtering system was switched off, The Times has learnt. The air filters, called electrostatic precipitators, at the ageing power plant were turned off on one of the boilers for “operational reasons” between March and October, a spokesman for the Malta Environment and Planning Authority (Mepa) confirmed. Now, the precipitators have been switched back on. However, when they are off, emissions are discharged without being filtered. The March to October period coincides with a rise in complaints from residents in the Fgura area over black dust deposited on rooftops, balconies and cars.”
F’Mejju 2010, The Malta Independent tal-11 tax-xahar irrapurtat, “Shattered glass, broken bins, bent road signs, vandalised parapets… this is the scene that greets you if you happen to be walking through Paceville after the weekend. These acts of vandalism must stop, said St Julian’s mayor Peter Bonello, but this can only be achieved by means of more surveillance and a bigger police presence. Mr Bonello said he will be asking for more police officers to patrol the area during the busy summer months, in a bid to control what he referred to as some people’s savage behaviour. “The acts of vandalism are beyond belief. And the local council ends up using a large chunk of its limited budget on repairs. “Besides, the poor residents have to bear the brunt of vandalised parapets and excessive noise, such as honking horns late at night, not to mention that during the weekend it is just as if they’re living in prison since they have to avoid moving their cars out of fear they won’t find a parking spot when they return home.”
F’Jannar 2012, Robert Arrigo, deputat Nazzjonalista were kemm il-MEPA ghandha ghal qalbha l-ambjent. Kiteb hekk f’ The Malta Independent, “It was a rape of three streets in St Julian’s, of virgin residential homes that, thanks to Mepa, have had their lives ruined. Mepa does not stand any more to safeguard what is correct. You must see the body language, how uncomfortable these persons were when pronouncing the rape of streets in St Julian’s. They should feel ashamed and resign, such was their arrogance. Ruining peoples’ lives and getting it stamped by Mepa, is evil. Pushing the standard of people’s lives down, ruining their comfort they strove to attain, probably downing their property value, surely rests on three shameful shoulders.”
F’Awwissu, The Times ippublikat parti
Ftit granet wara, l-istess The Times habret, “
Araw safejn twassal il-pika politika Nazzjonalista.
The picnic site at Wied il-Qlejgha, close to
The Times 19 t'April 2004
The Times 5 t'April 2005
Several hunters yesterday defied the law and police patrols as flocks of herons, birds of prey and other species, such as hoopoes and cuckoos, sought refuge on land after long, tiring flights from
The Malta Independent on Sunday 21 ta’ Settembru 2008
Massacre of unequalled proportions
Conservationists are chilled to the bone. Despite massive police deployment and the public presence of numerous bird conservationists from all over
Il-Gvern ikompli jeqred l-ambjent naturali.
“Two massive carob trees in
Fil-21 ta’ Mejju, diversi ghaqdiet waqt konferenza stampa iddeskrivew il-progett tal-wied tal-Kalkara bhala monument tal-misthija.
Argotti Botanic Gardens
Din l-Art Helwa
Friends of the Earth (
Ramblers Association of
“The chapel and cemetery at Wied Ghammieq in Kalkara are in desperate need of repair and maintenance … Although the authorities have not lifted a finger to at least keep the place in good shape, it is still visited by many people on a regular basis and Mass is still celebrated in the chapel every Sunday. However, even though the chapel is still in use, it is in a bad state of repair, part of the ceiling has collapsed and the boundary wall surrounding the cemetery is broken.”
Canfira lil Lawrence Gonzi
VALLETTA, Malta (di-ve news) -- January 29, 2007 -- 1430CET -- A 115,000-strong petition organized by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) has been delivered on Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi's doorstep at Auberge de Castille as a Cabinet meeting was in progress on Monday morning. The petition, delivered by RSPB and BirdLife Malta, claims it is high time the Maltese Government faced its illegal bird hunting and trapping 'shame' and honoured its bird protection commitments. It further urges Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi and his Government to “respect the EU bird protection laws, make sure those laws are enforced and stop spring hunting in
VALLETTA, Malta (di-ve news) -- February 27, 2007 -- 1445CET -- BirdLife Malta and Alternattiva Demokratika have lashed out at the government following the decision to open the spring hunting season in April, describing the government as weak and scared stiff of the hunters' votes.
Government has no mandate to defy the EU - AD chairperson
“Contrary to what Minister Pullicino claimed, the government has no mandate to defy the EU. In voting for EU membership a majority voted in favour of respect for the law and not for the government to defy EU rules in the hope of deceiving hunters one last time before the general election,” AD chairperson Harry Vassallo said. Dr. Vassallo went on to say that all hunters and trappers knew that spring hunting would come to an end, as the derogation negotiated in
IL-KONSEGWENZI TAD-DECIZJONI TAL-GVERN
The European Commission yesterday criticised the government's decision to allow hunting this spring. A spokesman told The Times the Commission will now be stepping up its legal procedures against
IR-RAMLA L-HAMRA FIL-MIRA TAL-AWTORITAJIET
Several organisations have lashed out at MEPA for approving the development since the Authority's Board gave their green light on June 6th. In a statement issued on Monday, the Xaghra Local Council requested the unconditional revocation of the decision to approve the permit, stating that the development would cause irreparable damage and would be in violation of several MEPA planning policies protecting this kind of environment. “Roman ruins, archaeological sites and unique sand dunes that support an indigenous eco-system not found elsewhere on Gozo or Malta, will be destroyed,” the local council said in a statement, as it also noted that the area is so sensitive that it is currently listed as a protected area under a UNESCO project and is also a candidate for Natura 2000 designation. On Sunday, Alternattiva Demokratika (AD) organised a protest in Ramla l-Hamra, close to the site of the proposed development. AD chairperson Harry Vassallo said that the issue of a permit for the constructions of tens of villas on the clay slopes below Calypso's Cave was an environmental and planning blasphemy which could not be tolerated. “This is another case where Mepa granted a permit when it should have dismissed the application in the first place. This is another example where Mepa is showing weakness with the strong and strength with the weak,” Dr. Vassallo said. The meeting was also addressed by the Ramblers' Association president Lino Bugeja, who stated that, if the permit was allowed to proceed, it was hard to imagine what other planning outrage could be prevented. On its part, BICREF expressed its disapproval for the continued lack of respect of locally unique and environmentally sensitive areas that should be prioritized for their conservation and long term protection, adding that locally there is still a lot to learn and implement with regard to safeguarding the country's heritage and valuable resources. “What is the use of having an authority to plan local development if indeed even the person in the street can appreciate the increasing loss and decreased quality of our natural environment and lives,” the organisation questioned. Last week, Flimkien ghal Ambjent Ahjar (FAA) had urged the Prime Minister and the Environment Minister to call an immediate inquiry into the case as well as for the resignation of the MEPA Chairman and Board members. The organisation also claimed that the in-depth archaeological study on which MEPA based both its waiver of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the Ramla l-Hamra villas project as well as its decision to approve the permit, turned out to be nothing more than a general preliminary cultural heritage report. FAA said that it was objecting to the project as the outline permit was granted on the grounds that the new project would occupy the same footprint as the old structures, when in fact it is over twice as large. Furthermore, the NGO went on, the site was located Outside of Development Zones (ODZ) -- when the rationalisation schemes were supposed to prevent any more development in such areas -- and was of high landscape value, an ecologically sensitive area bordering a Natura 2000 site, and an archaeologically sensitive area.
The Xaghra local council also expressed itself against the development on the hillside. It claimed the decision would cause irreparable damage and violate several planning policies protecting this kind of environment. “Roman ruins, archaeological sites and unique sand dunes that support an indigenous eco-system not found elsewhere on Gozo or
The Times 12.6.2007
Alternattiva Demokratika chairman Harry Vassallo said yesterday the issue of a permit for the construction of tens of villas on the clay slopes below Calypso's Cave was an environmental and planning blasphemy.
The Times 11.6.2007
Din l-Art Helwa, the heritage trust, has expressed its strong disapproval of Mepa's decision to grant a permit for the construction of a large tourist complex in
The Times 8.6.2007
The granting of a permit by Mepa for the development of villas with pools at Ramla l-Hamra (brought to the public’s attention by this paper on
The overwhelming majority of respondents think that the development overlooking Ramla l-Hamra should not go ahead, according to an online poll on The Malta Independent website. The week-long poll, which closed on Tuesday, asked readers whether or not they agreed that the Ramla L-Hamra development should go ahead. The majority of the participants, 88 per cent, said that the development should not go ahead, while the remaining 12 per cent said that it should.
Timmy Gambin, Sliema
The Times 13.6.2007
There can be little doubt that whether viewed from above (the belvedere at Calypso's cave) or below (Ramla il-Hamra), the area is one of outstanding natural beauty. The main impact that must be assessed when dealing with this project is the permanent alteration and destruction of a landscape that is unique to the
Karen Agius, Qawra
The Times 13.6.2007
The development at Ramla l-Hamra is against all sustainable measures that we have been lately hearing about. Also as a stakeholder in tourism sector I would like to highlight that it will severely damage
Michael Galea, Nadur
The Times 13.6.2007
The rule of the jungle seems to prevail in this country. The irony is this: Having a carob tree in your plot may seriously impede your construction plans. But constructing a whole tourist complex in a sensitive area such as
Alexander George Farrugia, Xaghra
The Times 12.6.2007
We should all stand up, turn around, face each other, and give ourselves a congratulating handshake, for we finally did it! We managed, through Mepa's decision, to give consent to the building of villas (bet we hold the world record for villas per square kilometre), on the Xaghra side of Ramla beach, arguably the most beautiful and best preserved sandy beach these islands have. If that were not enough, this project will ruin the unobstructed (and pristine) view of Ramla beach and the gorgeous
Fiona Keeling, Gharb
The Times 12.6.2007
Now tourists will be guided to Calypso's Cave, where the legendary nymph seduced Ulysses, to... a building site! The constant dust, mess and chaos created by the endless developments is a complete deterrant to tourists - a far more serious problem than the island's lack of airport or golf course facilities. The tourist industry should do more to oppose the environmental destruction of these beautiful islands but once again the profit of the few will take priority over the economic needs of the entire island. Prosit Mepa!
Frances Busuttil, Xaghra
The Times 6.6.2007
As a resident of Xaghra, I oppose vehemently any construction or development being proposed by application PA 07902/05 beneath
The Times 6.6.2007
PA 7902/05 says "Demolition of existing commercial complex". It should read “Demolition of Ramla Bay, the most beautiful part of the Maltese islands”. Unfortunately the locals, especially Nadur and Xaghra residents do not really know what is in store for Ramla, that the scenery around the legendary
Frank Theuma, Nadur
The Times 14.6.2007
Our decision makers still don't get it, do they? It is beside the point if the permit granted for the Ramla l-Hamra development is above board or not; the point is that we are going to destroy more of our precious countryside. It is even more terrifying if such destruction can be carried out with the approval of the law. If we have laws that make this possible I think that it is high time that we do away with them.
Nikki Camilleri, Msida
The Times 14.6.2007
It was with great dismay and sadness that I read the news on Saturday morning in which Mepa gave the go-ahead for the development at Ramla l-Hamra. We really never learn, do we? I urge all those with enough intelligence to see that this deplorable development is tantamount to the destruction of a vital part of one of our most important cultural and natural heritage sites, to make their voice heard now. Apathy has already allowed us to destroy much of the beauty this island had to offer. The time for serious civil action has begun.
Helen Caruana Galizia, Birzebbuga
The Times 18.6.2007
The Ramla l-Hamra project should not even have reached the stage of awaiting an Environmental Impact Assessment. It should have been smothered at birth, if not before.
Sigar tal-Ficus fil-Gudja ... wara li suppost zabruhom!
Il-Maghtab ta' Ghawdex. Muntanja ta' zibel f'Il-Qortin
Paceville - 28 t'Awwissu 2003
Paceville - 28 t'Awwissu 2003
It-Triq li minn H'Attard taghti ghan-Naxxar - Awwissu 2003
Materjal tossiku mitfuh f'Kordin - Settembru 2003
Il-bahar f'Marsaxlokk - Ritratt ta' The Sunday Times 22.2.2009
Putirjal - Awwissu 2004
Belt il-Hazna - Dicembru 2004
Post ta' rikreazzjoni abbandunat hdejn il-Laboratorju tal-Paci Hal Far - Dicembru 2004
Triq il-Professur Carmelo Coleiro Tal-Handaq - Dicembru 2004
Misrah San Alwigi Birkirkara - Mejju 2005
Triq it-Turisti Bugibba - 15 ta' Mejju 2005
Massakru ta' sigar minn Transport Malta fil-Marsa - Frar 2012
L-ewwel ghaxquha imbaghad ippruvaw isibu soluzjoni. Ma' haddiehor mxew mod iehor u waqqghulu l-binja mill-ewwel!!
Fl-Environment Performance Index tal-2012, Malta tpoggiet ma' pajjizi tat-tielet dinja
A board of inquiry appointed by the Minister of Finance has concluded that Enemalta did not dispose of Mercaptan gas in the proper manner when it was destroyed by fire near Mgarr in 2009. The operation was carried out without the necessary permits. However there do not appear to have been consequences on anybody's health. Possible criminal action is time-barred. The report was tabled in Parliament by Mr Fenech this evening. The board of inquiry said that while it was rated as an immediate acute health hazard, ethyl mercaptan is not considered to be a delayed chronic health hazard. Also, it accumulates very little in the body of living organisms. Notwithstanding, there are potential serious health effects, however rare the more extreme effects may be, even for cases of inhalation of gases or fumes released by mercaptan. From the hospital admission registers of Mater Dei Hospital, no records could be found about any admission cases of gas or fume inhalation on the dates when the mercaptan leakages and disposal incidents occurred, and no such cases were known to have been reported to any other health facility in the public sector. Due to physical characteristics of ethyl mercaptan and the fact that these disposal and leakage incidents all occurred more than two years ago, it was unlikely that there still wassignificant ground residue of, and thus residual environmental risk from, this chemical at the said sites. The board said there had 'evidently' been serious shortcomings in decisions and actions by EneMalta at different stages of the mercaptan events. "However these should not be seen in isolation of the context and circumstances in which they took place. While not considered as justification, it is appreciated that there were several factors that may provide a fairer understanding and appreciation of the situations and dilemmas faced by the Enemalta management re this case." In explained that in the perceived emergency situation that EneMalta found itself in, to have to dispose of the mercaptan in the summer of 2009, EneMalta contended that the burning of the mercaptan was carried out under as controlled conditions as there could possibly be in the circumstances. "The burning of mercaptan by EneMalta through its contractor, though carried out with certain safety measures, cannot be deemed to have been done under the controlled conditions as referred to in Material Safety Data Sheets and corresponding standards of repute."
Neither were the disposal and other activities by EneMalta concerning mercaptan undertaken according to all the prevalent local legislation at time, specifically as follows:
- The disposal of mercaptan by EneMalta and its contractor was not covered with a permit issued in terms of the Waste Management (Permit and Control) Regulations;
- The transportation of mercaptan as waste was not covered by a consignment note issued in terms of the Waste Management (Activity Registration) Regulations;
- No records seem to have been kept in terms of the Waste Management (Activity Registration) Regulations, with regards to the waste management activities which were arranged on behalf of EneMalta
- No permit was sought in terms of the Waste Management (Activity Registration) Regulations for the storage of mercaptan as a hazardous waste on its premises, at least for the duration that the whole quantity of mercaptan was kept together in one site by EneMalta," the board said.
It added that if any Enemalta official is found responsible to committing an offence, that offence is legally deemed to have been done by EneMalta. However in this eventuality, any designated official of EneMalta is deemed to be vested with such responsibility on behalf of EneMalta. It pointed out that a breach of the Waste Management (Permit and Control) Regulations renders one subject to a fine for a first offence. However with no such precedent as far as the Board of Inquiry was aware and subject to there being no such precedent, any offence committed by EneMalta now is barred by a lapse of prescription and thus no further criminal action is warranted. Likewise for the same reason, no criminal action is warranted with regards to offences allegedly committed also under the Waste Management (Activity Registration) Regulations. Still, at its discretion, EneMalta may still opt to initiate disciplinary proceedings against any of its professional and other employees who are covered by the respective collective agreements and were directly involved in the disposal of mercaptan, subject to such disciplinary proceedings not taking into account any alleged "criminal offence" as this has now been barred by prescription. Consideration of serious offences of the type "gross negligence in performing one's duties", as listed in the stated collective agreements, may be applied. "The institution of charges with regard to any breaches of the personal engagement contract agreements of any senior management officials directly involved in the decisions and actions related to the mercaptan case is also at the discretion of the EneMalta Board of Directors. "The presence of concentrated ethyl mercaptan at EneMalta was an unintentional and unique occurrence which is unlikely to happen again to EneMalta, given that now the responsibility for LPG procurement in Malta has been taken over by a private gas operator, albeit the fact that the LPG is still presently being stored at the EneMalta Gas Division site in Qajjenza."
The board made the following recommendations:
- continuing capital investment at the Gas Division as long as this continues to operate
- engaging suitable professional staff, including with environmental credentials
- organising more tuition and practical training regarding hazardous operations
- improving management awareness about the various legal obligations that abound
- introducing an internal audit function, answering directly to the Enemalta Board
- ensuring that required approvals and permits are obtained in writing, and records kept
- coordinating better proactively with public partners and regulatory authorities
- assigning an official to specialise on dealing with the various regulatory authorities
- introducing an internal inventory records register for hazardous material substances
- creating an internal high-level health-and-safety committee, to meet on a regular basis
"Other than considering the implementation of the recommendations stated above, no further physical or other remedial actions are, presently at least, envisaged to be needed regarding either environmental or health effects resulting from the mercaptan disposals."
One fine day in September 2009 people in many parts of the island woke up to a strong unpleasant odour in the air – a pervasive smell of rotten eggs or boiled cabbage. It was in fact the smell of the hazardous chemical called mercaptan, burned illegally by people from Enemalta in a field outside Mġarr. The story of how the chemical came to be disposed of in this most irresponsible manner is one of absolute shame. It shows glaring lack of transparency and accountability in a state corporation that already has more than enough problems to worry about. The shortcomings add to the general perception, often well grounded, that in
Editorjal, The Times 5.5.2012