The Malta Independent 19 October 2019, Saturday

Excavation on Manoel island to temporarily stop pending appeal - FAA

Wednesday, 18 September 2019, 14:29 Last update: about 30 days ago

The planning appeals tribunal (EPRT) has accepted Flimkien ghal Ambjent Ahjar's (FAA) request to stop the excavation works of Manoel Island for a period of three months while the Tribunal examines the appeal lodged against the master plan for the island, the NGO said.

FAA contends that the original master plan issued in the year 2000 had expired and was never renewed. In addition, FAA insists that the amended master plan approved by the Planning Board earlier this year is also invalid for several reasons.

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"Among its numerous objections the FAA is very concerned about the lack an environment management system for the excavation works which had promised by the developers. MIDI itself had admitted in its project development statement that its contractors' trucks fall far short of environmental standards, and that their diesel engines emit toxic nitrogen oxides and carbon monoxides. "

"Despite knowing all this, MIDI intends making 15,000 trips with such trucks through the narrow streets of Gzira with all the implications that brings for the health of residents. FAA highlights the fact that according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) vehicle emissions contribute to asthma, heart attacks, strokes and cancer."

FAA will continue working on this project to safeguard the interests of Malta's residents and heritage, it said.

"This comes days after the same Tribunal's decision on another FAA case where a Rabat development permit threatened to encroach onto the walls forming the last remaining part of the Roman ditch to Mdina. This permit was rescinded due to the lack of studies which were required for such a sensitive heritage case."

The FAA was represented by lawyer Dr Andrew Sciberras.


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