The Malta Independent 23 October 2018, Tuesday

Gas pipeline project is one of top priority projects for EU – Minister Joe Mizzi

Thursday, 11 October 2018, 14:05 Last update: about 12 days ago

The Malta-Sicily gas pipeline is one of the top priority projects for the EU as it aims at ending Malta’s gas isolation, said Minister for Energy and Water Management Joe Mizzi during the World Energy Summit currently being held in Milan, Italy.

When asked about the energy issues and trends in the energy sector, Minister Mizzi said that being at the periphery of Europe with no gas interconnection with mainland Europe, so far, is quite a concern, as this affects Malta’s energy security of supply. “To reduce this concern,” he added, “the Maltese Government has worked tirelessly over the past few years to increase energy diversification mainly through the operation of an electricity interconnector with Italy, installing gas fired power plants together with an LNG terminal, and now we are also in the study and planning phase to build a gas-pipeline with Italy”. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Another concern in the energy sector is ensuring that this isolation and the requirement to import mostly all energy from other countries does not negatively affect energy prices. Minister Mizzi explained that with the recent energy overhaul, from generating electricity from heavy fuel oil to the use of LNG to generate electricity, nowadays Maltese consumers benefit from one of the cheapest electricity tariffs in the EU.

“Moreover, through a number of incentives we have also seen a significant increase in the uptake of solar panels and so far, Malta is very much on track to reach its 2020 Renewable Energy target. Having said that, this overhaul was a balancing exercise for us, managing to achieve sustainable goals using cleaner energy compared to our previous use of heavy fuel oil and at the same time managing to maintain affordable electricity prices, for a small Island this is not an easy task,” he said.

Minister Mizzi added that, for decades, the Maltese Government had failed to make leaps in the energy sector in Malta, however this has all changed during the past five years whereby the energy sector overhaul was one of the main successful pledges of this government.

“With hard-work we managed to turn tables, however, we will not stop here. We are constantly analysing our potential and trying to understand better how we could make up for our limited geographical space and maximise the potential of our only source of energy, that is solar”.

Minister Mizzi concluded that Malta’s objective as a country is to be on the forefront of new technology, especially innovative energy solutions such as energy storage, which could be adapted to the country’s specificities and bring about the desired benefit of ensuring energy security, help achieve sustainable goals, leading the country into the future energy transition.

  • don't miss