Alternattiva Demokratika – The Green Party Local Council candidate Luke Caruana stated that sustainable alternatives exist to the Malta-Gozo tunnel, which would have a less harmful impact on the environment without the need to cause environmental destruction. Caruana in a comment to Newsbook.com.mt said that the tunnel’s entrance would have adverse effects on Mellieħa and St Paul’s Bay.
Caruana explained that the entrance of the link would be at the limits of Mellieħa, in an area known as Għerien. He said that this posed a threat to the surrounding localities, explaining how agricultural land would be taken up to make way for new roads to cater for traffic. He further explained that traffic would generate emissions which would contribute to air, noise, and light pollution, thus negatively impacting the ecology of the surroundings. The Local Council candidate for Mellieħa explained that the nearby aquifer at Miżieb was also threatened by the project, reminding that the government was obliged to safeguard Miżieb as per EU law.
Caruana ended his comment urging the government to refrain from riding roughshod and explore sustainable alternatives which could link the two islands.
‘Tunnel will bring more destruction’ – AD
In a press conference on Saturday, the Green Party lambasted the project saying that alternatives existed to creating more problems both at Ta’ Kenuna in Gozo and L-Għerien in Malta.
Addressing the press at l-Għerien, Chairperson Carmel Cacopardo said that to date the entrance to the tunnel will be sited very close to l-Imbordin at St Paul’s Bay. Cacopardo said that the tunnel will general a large quantity of rubble as well as pose a threat to Miżieb aquifer. Further outlining the environmental threats, AD said that the construction of the tunnel will have an impact the Pwales valley as well as the Simar Nature Reserve.
The Party said it agreed that one needs to address the problematic mobility with the two islands, however such problem could be overcome via the use of a fast ferry service from Imġarr port in Gozo and various points along the Malta coast, among which Xemxija, Sliema and Valletta, together with an upgraded public transport between these points and the rest of the island.