9 Key Environmental Demands – 2022 Elections

As a united front of environmental NGOs active in protecting the quality of life of all residents of the Maltese Islands, we address you today with 9 Key Environmental Demands, which need to be addressed in your political party’s Election Manifesto 2022. We request your sincere feedback in the ongoing pre-election campaign. In view of the rampant degradation of our natural and built environments we state

For our Environment: from Words to Action

_____

Bħala front magħqud ta’ NGOs ambjentali attivi fil-ħarsien tal-kwalità tal-ħajja tar-residenti kollha tal-Gżejjer Maltin, aħna nindirizzawkom illum b’9 Talbiet Ambjentali Ewlenin, li jeħtieġ li jiġu indirizzati fil-Manifest Elettorali tal-partit politiku tiegħek 2022. Nitolbu l-feedback tiegħek fil-kampanja elettorali ta’ qabel l-elezzjoni li ġejja. Fid-dawl tad-degradazzjoni qawwija tal-ambjenti naturali u mibnija tagħna nistqarru

Għall-Ambjent tagħna: Mill-kliem għall-Fatti

#1 Governance

To entrench environmental protection, guardianship and the environmental rights of future generations into the Maltese Constitution. This constitutional right should allow all citizens the right to challenge the state or any public or private entity for enacting, implementing, enforcing, or lack of it, laws, projects and actions that threaten this very clause.

#1 Governanza

Li jiddaħħlu fil-Kostituzzjoni Maltija l-ħarsien tal-ambjent, il-kustodja u d-drittijiet tal-ambjent għall-ġenerazzjonijiet tal-ġejjieni. Dan id-dritt kostituzzjonali għandu jippermetti liċ-ċittadini kollha d-dritt li jikkontestaw lill-istat jew lil kwalunkwe entità pubblika jew privata biex jattwaw, jimplimentaw, jiżguraw l-infurzar jew in-nuqqas tiegħu, fir-rigward tal-liġijiet, il-proġetti u l-azzjonijiet li jheddu din il-klawsola stess.

#2 Climate Change

To truly prioritise the climate crisis as the greatest threat to humankind and the planet that requires bold and immediate actions across all levels of government and society. This includes immediately halting investments in fossil fuel infrastructure and investing in renewable energy sources to achieve the EU 2030 target of 30%, as well as creating a fossil fuel free vision for Malta, including a plan for the clean energy transition.

#2 Tibdil fil-Klima

Biex tassew tingħata prijorità lill-kriżi tal-klima bħala l-akbar theddida għall-umanità u l-pjaneta li teħtieġ azzjonijiet kuraġġjużi u immedjati fil-livelli kollha tal-gvern u tas-soċjetà. Dan jinkludi t-twaqqif immedjat tal-investimenti fl-infrastruttura tal-fjuwils fossili u l-investiment f’sorsi tal-enerġija li tiġġedded biex tintlaħaq il-mira tal-UE għall-2030 ta’ 30%, kif ukoll il-ħolqien ta’ viżjoni mingħajr fjuwils fossili għal Malta, inkluż pjan għat-tranżizzjoni lejn enerġija nadifa.

#3 Sustainable Mobility

To prioritise public and active transport modes, by investing in direct, frequent and reliable public transport connections and safe, direct and connected infrastructure for walking and cycling, while creating pedestrian areas in village and town centres. The priority should first and foremost be on reducing the number of cars and journeys made by car, instead of focusing only on the transition to electric vehicles. 

#3 Mobilità Sostenibbli

Biex tipprijoritizza modi ta’ trasport pubbliku u attiv, billi jsir investiment f’konnessjonijiet tat-trasport pubbliku diretti, frekwenti u affidabbli u infrastruttura sikura, diretta u konnessa għall-mixi u r-rota, filwaqt li jinħolqu żoni pedonali fiċ-ċentri tal-irħula u tal-ibliet. Il-prijorità għandha tkun l-ewwel u qabel kollox fit-tnaqqis tal-karrozzi u l-vjaġġi li jsiru bil-karozza, minflok ma niffukaw biss fuq it-tranżizzjoni għall-vetturi elettriċi.

#4 Urban Development

To reform the PA planning board to ensure political independence and seek representation based on competence. The Superintendence of Cultural Heritage and ERA should be given veto power in PA application decisions. The following policies (SPED, DC2015, Rural Policy Design Guidelines, Tree Protection Act) should be urgently revised to better protect townscapes and rural areas.

#4 L-Iżvilupp Urban

Biex tirriforma l-Bord tal-Ippjanar tal-PA biex tiġi żgurata l-indipendenza politika u tfittex rappreżentanza bbażata fuq il-kompetenza. Barra minn hekk, biex tingħata s-setgħa ta’ veto lis-Sovrintendenza tal-Wirt Kulturali u lill-ERA fid-deċiżjonijiet dwar applikazzjonijiet tal-PA. Biex tirrevedi b’mod urġenti l-politiki li ġejjin (SPED, DC2015, Linji Gwida dwar id-Disinn tal-Politika Rurali, Att dwar il-Protezzjoni tas-Siġar) biex tipproteġi aħjar il-pajsaġġi tal-bliet u ż-żoni rurali.

#5 Rural Policy

To conclude and publish the 2020 Draft Rural Policy and Design Guidance, which has been in limbo since August 2020.
To protect public right of way on footpaths that have been open historically, while respecting the rights of land-owners or tenants and creating  a database and map with information on land ownership and publicly accessible roads and footpaths. 
To include the already proposed public domain sites (under the 2016 Public Domain Act), which, despite extensive public consultation and press lobbying (dating back to 2017), have not been granted protection so far.  

#5 Politika Rurali

Biex tikkonkludi u tippubblika l-Abbozz tal-Politika Rurali u Gwida tad-Disinn tal-2020, li ilha fil-limbu minn Awwissu 2020.
Biex tipproteġi d-dritt tal-passaġġ pubbliku fuq mogħdijiet li kienu miftuħa storikament, filwaqt li jiġu rispettati d-drittijiet tas-sidien tal-art/kerrejja u tinħoloq database/mappa b’informazzjoni dwar is-sidien tal-art u toroq u mogħdijiet aċċessibbli għall-pubbliku.
Barra minn hekk, biex dawn is-siti jiġu inklużi fid-dominju pubbliku (skont l-Att dwar id-Dominju Pubbliku tal-2016), li, minkejja konsultazzjoni pubblika estensiva u lobbying tal-istampa (li jmorru lura għall-2017), s’issa għadhom ma ngħatawx protezzjoni.

#6 Habitat & Biodiversity

To increase the proportion of land enjoying full environmental protection and extend the footprint of existing nature reserves plus establishing new areas for full nature conservation.
To strengthen the legal basis for nature protection by ensuring that ERA has full legal oversight on all environmental legislation and international obligations including bird protection.
To holistically and immediately address the spread of alien species before they further displace indigenous and endemic species and habitats forever.

#6 Ħabitat u Bijodiversità

Biex jiżdied il-proporzjon ta’ art li tgawdi protezzjoni ambjentali sħiħa u testendi l-footprint tar-riservi naturali eżistenti flimkien mat-twaqqif ta’ żoni ġodda għall-konservazzjoni sħiħa tan-natura.
Biex tissaħħaħ il-bażi legali għall-protezzjoni tan-natura billi jiġi żgurat li l-ERA jkollha sorveljanza legali sħiħa fuq il-leġiżlazzjoni ambjentali u l-obbligi internazzjonali kollha inkluża l-protezzjoni tal-għasafar.
Biex jindirizzaw b’mod olistiku u immedjat it-tixrid ta’ speċi aljeni qabel ma jkomplu jieħdu post speċi u ħabitati indiġeni u endemiċi għal dejjem.

#7 Marine Areas

To recognise that Malta’s largest habitat is the sea. This requires the authorities to provide the resources to adequately enforce and protect our marine environment against overfishing and illegal fishing activities, anchoring and dumping. The impacts and consequences to the marine habitat and its biodiversity need to be prioritised in any marine-based infrastructure and land reclamation projects.
To safeguard our marine habitats and resources by promoting sustainable use and regulation. This should include regulating and controlling the impacts from maritime vessels on air and water including establishing the Mediterranean Basin as an Emission Controlled Area for cruise ships.

#7 Żoni tal-Baħar

Biex tagħraf li l-akbar ħabitat ta’ Malta huwa l-baħar. Dan jirrikjedi li l-awtoritajiet jipprovdu r-riżorsi biex jinfurzaw u jipproteġu b’mod adegwat l-ambjent tal-baħar tagħna kontra sajd żejjed u attivitajiet ta’ sajd illegali, ankrar u rimi. L-impatti u l-konsegwenzi għall-ħabitat tal-baħar u l-bijodiversità tiegħu jeħtieġ li jiġu prijoritizzati fi kwalunkwe infrastruttura bbażata fuq il-baħar u proġetti ta’ reklamazzjoni tal-art.
Li nissalvagwardjaw il-ħabitati u r-riżorsi tal-baħar tagħna billi nippromwovu l-użu u r-regolamentazzjoni sostenibbli. Dan għandu jinkludi r-regolamentazzjoni u l-kontroll tal-impatti mill-bastimenti marittimi fuq l-arja u l-ilma inkluż it-twaqqif tal-Mediterran bħala Żona ta’ Kontroll tal-Emissjonijiet għall-cruise liners.

#8 Agriculture & Food Systems

To support food independence by creating mechanisms to ensure that agricultural land remains in the hands of farmers and that they are not evicted from their lands. This should include creating a framework that guarantees that agricultural land, including all government-owned land, is only used for agricultural purposes.
To increase agro-ecological farming practices, targeting that 25% of agricultural land becomes organic by 2030 and additionally reduce the use of synthetic pesticides by 80% by 2030.

#8 Agrikoltura u Sistemi tal-Ikel

Li tappoġġja l-indipendenza tal-ikel billi jinħolqu mekkaniżmi li jiżguraw li l-art agrikola tibqa’ f’idejn il-bdiewa u li dawn ma jiġux żgumbrati minn arthom. Barra minn hekk, il-ħolqien tal-qafas li jiggarantixxi li l-art agrikola, inkluża l-art kollha tal-gvern, tintuża biss għal skopijiet agrikoli.
Biex jiżdiedu l-prattiki tal-biedja agro-ekoloġika, immirati lejn il-mira li 25% tal-art agrikola ssir organika sal-2030 u barra minn hekk tnaqqis fl-użu ta’ pestiċidi sintetiċi bi 80% sal-2030.

#9 Waste Management

To tackle the issue of food waste. This should include making the necessary legislative changes along with incentives for supermarkets and food importers and distributors to minimise food waste and to channel food that would end up in the waste stream to food banks.
To implement at the earliest an obligatory waste separation regime for domestic and commercial waste, and implement a strategy to minimise waste packaging. This should be supported by strengthened enforcement of existing rules. 
To create mechanisms that encourage a cut-back of construction and development waste at source. Incentives should be provided to the construction industry for reusing old stone, and making provisions for recycling and reusing other construction materials through the use of a central storage facility.

#9 L-Immaniġġjar tal-Iskart

Biex tiġi indirizzata l-kwistjoni tal-ħela tal-ikel. Dan għandu jinkludi li jsiru l-bidliet leġiżlattivi meħtieġa flimkien ma’ inċentivi għas-supermarkets u l-importaturi u d-distributuri tal-ikel biex jimminimizzaw il-ħela tal-ikel u biex l-ikel li jkun se jispiċċa mormi jiġi allokat, minflok, f’food banks.
Biex timplimenta mill-aktar fis reġim obbligatorju ta’ separazzjoni tal-iskart għall-iskart domestiku u kummerċjali, u toħloq u timplimenta strateġija biex tnaqqas l-ippakkjar tal-iskart. Dan għandu jkun appoġġjat minn infurzar imsaħħaħ tar-regoli eżistenti. 
Biex jinħolqu mekkaniżmi li jinkoraġġixxu tnaqqis fl-iskart tal-kostruzzjoni u l-iżvilupp fis-sors. Għandhom jiġu pprovduti inċentivi lill-industrija tal-kostruzzjoni għall-użu mill-ġdid ta’ ġebel antik, u r-riċiklaġġ u l-użu mill-ġdid ta’ materjali oħra tal-kostruzzjoni permezz tal-użu ta’ faċilità ta’ ħażna ċentrali.

 The demands have been put together by Birdlife Malta, Din l-Art Helwa, Flimkien Ghal-Ambjent Ahjar, Friends of the Earth Malta, Nature Trust Malta, Ramblers Association of Malta. 

And endorsed by: Extinction Rebellion Malta, Għawdix, Movement Graffitti, Rota, The ‘Grow 10 Trees’ Project, Wirt Għawdex, Zminijietna – Voice of the Left.