Updated: Marsaxlokk resident files judicial protest against ERA over LNG power station
Saturday, 17 December 2016, 16:14 Last update: about 11 hours ago
A Marsaxlokk resident today filed a judicial protest against the Environmental and Resources Authority (ERA) ahead of Monday’s final decision on applications for permits for the LNG power station.
The judicial protest was filed by engineer Arthur Ciantar, assisted by the PN President of the Executive and maritime lawyer Ann Fenech. She presented the protest this afternoon at the law courts in Valletta.
On Thursday, ERA published a 70-page document replying to the concerns expressed by all stakeholders involved, leaving residents with no more than four days to look into these replies before the final consultation meeting which will be held on Monday.
The LNG power station has been a controversial political topic, which grew even more after the Labour government announced that Electrogas consortium would be responsible for its construction.
Among the most contentious of topics was the huge tanker which is to serve as a floating storage unit (FSU). The government has said that the tanker is a greater part of its mission to produce cleaner energy, while the Nationalist Party says that it puts the lives of the people living in Marsaxlokk Bay at risk.
Electrogas had said that the Armada LNG Mediterrana underwent rigorous safety testing and trials before departing for Malta from its original berth in Singapore with armed guards accompanying the vessel throughout its journey as is standard protocol for most ocean going vessels as a mitigation measure against piracy in specific vulnerable areas.
The government has kept on insisting that the project is safe and has dismissed any claims that there wasn’t enough consultation with residents.
In a statement, the government said that Dr Fenech is making another attempt to put spokes in the wheels of the consultation process that will lead to a new power station which is more environment friendly.
The PN had 40 days in which to submit its proposals, the government said.
It made reference to the oil scandal that had rocked the PN government of the time and had also led to high costs for energy. This irresponsible act confirms that the PN is more interested in seeking its interests that those of the nation.