Responding to the Prime Minister’s comments about Malta becoming the first European country to have a car fleet of only electric cars, the Bicycle Advocacy Group says that such an idea requires both logistics and environmental consciousness.
BAG says that while the Prime Minister wants to see Malta becoming a country of private electric car ownership, such a process would need a, ‘national network of charging points but a system for the collection and the recycling of used car batteries, while setting up penalties for those who discard batteries illegally to the detriment of our environment.’
While BAG says the idea is ‘a strategic step in the right direction’, the advocacy group also believes that it needs to be, ‘part of a holistic transport system that allows multi-modal transport, including travelling by bicycle, walking or using an electric bus.’
They state that if not done right, combustion vehicles could be replaced by electric vehicles but that this would only serve to replace one reliance for another. The result would be the same number of cars on the roads, thus not addressing Malta’s parking and congestion problems.
‘If we plan for a multi-modal transport network that gives equal importance to the various sustainable modes of transport, we can improve the air quality in our towns and villages to the benefit of all Maltese citizens. When we encourage cycling and walking for short trips we would be helping to improve the general health and well-being of the Maltese population.’ BAG states.