Manoel Island excavation works suspended for three months – FAA

Steve Zammit Lupi

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

The planning appeals tribunal (EPRT) has accepted FAA Flimkien għal Ambjent Aħjar’s request for a stop to 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.

In a statement, the organisation explained that the original master plan issued 19 years ago 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.

Among its numerous objections, FAA is very concerned about the lack of an environmental management system for the excavation works which had promised by the developers. It is believed that 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.

FAA added that despite knowing all this, MIDI intends to make 15,000 trips with such trucks through the narrow streets of Gzira, with all the health implications that brings to the residents.

Read: Manoel Island works not accounting for health impact for Gzira residents

The NGO was represented by lawyer Dr Andrew Sciberras.

It also appealed to members of the public who “value Malta’s heritage and a healthy environment to enable FAA to continue with its work by joining FAA” or submitting donations on their website.