The Malta Independent 22 August 2019, Thursday

Energy Minister admits that heavy fuel oil is being stored at Qajjenza

Monday, 11 February 2019, 16:26 Last update: about 7 months ago

Energy Minister Joe Mizzi has admitted that types of fuel including heavy fuel oil is being stored at Qajjenza in response to Parliamentary Questions posed by PN MP Hermann Schiavone.

In a heated back and forth debate, the minister said that there is a major difference between burning heavy fuel oil as the PN had done, and storing it in Qajjenza for it to then be transferred onto ships.

Schiavone previously alleged that the fuel was being heated at Qajjenza before transferring it. The minister said that a yearly audit by the Environment and Resources authority to ensure that the necessary apparatus at Qajjenza are operating not to allow any gas leaks and that the process is safe.

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Asked about the security situation at Qajjenza, the minister said that he does not know about anything not being safe and according to the yearly audit, all is ok.

The minister said that a new fuel plant is being built in Has Saptan, adding that the government has been rigid on environmental safeguards etc. This new plant is expected to take over from the Qajjenza facility. He said it will also use the latest technologies and if there is an emergency, the plant will close itself down till the emergency is dealt with.

The Labour Party had pre-2013 attacked the PN politically over the use of heavy fuel oil as a form of energy on the island, calling the BWSC at the time a cancer factory.

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