The Malta Independent 5 August 2021, Thursday

European environmental rules

Alfred Sant MEP Monday, 19 July 2021, 08:00 Last update: about 17 days ago

Last week, the European Commission published important proposals for a major upgrade of the laws and regulations intended to protect the environment from the global effects of climate warming which has become a real threat to human life. If the proposals are carried through, the generation and use of energy in European countries will have to change drastically across a wide front. This will happen most in the fields of taxation and in the established structures of incentives and burdens that underpin the economic and social development of EU member states.

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Usages, styles of behaviour will have to be abandoned... like for transport. Otherwise if we choose to maintain them, we would have to pay much more for them than we do now.

And yet, by doing so, we would only have met the least difficult challenge. Others will be physically very, more demanding, so that some countries will struggle to meet them on time – as for instance, in the changes required for the generation of energy to meet with demand.

There is no doubt that Malta should feature among the countries that will have to overcome huge material problems.   

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 GOZO’S SHARE

At the European Parliament’s committee of petitions I had to respond on behalf of the socialists and democrats’ group to a petition raised by mayors from Italy’s south. They protested against the way by which the Italian government will be allocating monies from the EU’s recovery fund. They insisted that the needs of their region, which were larger than those of the country’s north, had not been taken sufficiently into account.

As the meeting progressed, I wondered about Gozo. I believe and hope it has been given a significant weighting in the Malta government’s plans to deploy the recovery funds which we have been assessed.  (Never mind that I totally disagree with the proposal to build an airstrip in Gozo since I can guess what it will lead to…)

However, all in all, it would be a good idea for information to be published separately about how much is going to be spent in Gozo out of the total funds available… and on which projects.

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I STILL GET TOLD

Beyond the results of the opinion polls published by newspapers, what  amazes me is how many people one meets or listens to who claim they are still not convinced the PN is on the right track. Or even if they agree that it is working as it should, they believe it is still not cutting much ice with citizens, or if you like, voters.

This is a curious development, one that is difficult to explain. It cannot be said that the party does not have valid people, both among the established and the new ones. It has.

However, if I understand well what’s going on, there exists a radical lack of faith and confidence among traditional and « modern » PN supporters in the message of their party. It has nothing to do with how they evaluate their MPs and election candidates.  What’s causing this distrust, then?

I doubt whether a reply can be found simply by parachuting into the thick of the PN’s organizational team, some media and PR guru to guide them about strategy. If I remember well, this tactic was already adopted some years back and it was a total failure.

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