News | Wednesday, 21 January 2009

What the Climate Change Committee suggests we do

Recommendation 01:
The Climate Change Committee report should be published to stimulate an intensive National discussion and consultation process – which would act as the spur for the sustained dissemination of knowledge and participation in this important policy domain.

Recommendation 02
Given the economic impacts of Climate Change it is imperative that the necessary governance, policy and investment in capacity is made by the Government to ensure that Malta has a robust and effective GHG Inventory system.

Recommendation 03
Given the strategic importance of the maritime sector to Malta – both in terms of its economic and social activity as well as with regards to the Maltese Maritime Flag – the Government should maintain a position that action taken with regards to maritime Greenhouse Gases emissions is on the basis of an international agreement that includes the International Maritime Organisation; so that abatement measures are agreed to secure a level playing ground for Malta and thus minimise any consequential negative impacts.

Recommendation 04
Given the potential impact on Malta’s national airline as a consequence of integrating the aviation sector within the European Emissions Trading Scheme the Government should, following the signing of the Blue Med Declaration on the creation of a Mediterranean Functional Airspace Block, continue to work actively at all levels for the swift implementation of the Single European Sky.

Recommendation 05
The Government should strengthen its strategic, institutional and promotional capacity in order to establish a vibrant Clean Development Mechanism framework in Malta, and in so doing secure a synergy between government entities such as MEPA, EuroMedITI Ltd, appropriate government entities and the private sector in order to optimise opportunities available to Malta through the Clean Development Mechanism.

Recommendation 06
The Ministry of Resources and Rural Affairs should establish a virtual network on Climate Change that will allow research institutions, government entities and ad hoc initiatives such as the Climate Change Committee to synergise their work, as well as to complement and supplement their work, thus securing continuity over time, by allowing for new work to build on past initiatives and efforts.

Recommendation 07
The electricity sector with particular reference to the Emissions Trading Scheme should constitute the primary focus of concentrated efforts to reduce CO2 emissions and in doing so the Government should adopt a strategy that directs efforts towards those abatement measures that will render the highest level of tCO2e reduction for each €1 of investment made.

Recommendation 08
The Ministry of Finance, Economy and Investments should establish a Shadow Price of Carbon for Malta by June 2009.

Recommendation 09
The Management Efficiency Unit within the Office of the Prime Minister should be tasked to work with the Ministry of Finance, Economy and Investment to introduce by June 2009 policy and supporting guidelines for the consistent and mandatory application of a Shadow Price of Carbon by public entities in the evaluation and assessment of policy and investments that have a significant Carbon or other GHG impact.

Recommendation 10
In an ambience where international, supra-national, and regional frameworks and policies on Climate Change have a pervasive impact on national finances and economics, the Government should, at the earliest opportunity possible, graft the economics of Climate Change onto both the national budgetary and macro- and micro- economic planning framework.

Recommendation 11
The Government should build a strong indigenous Climate Change budgeting and economic planning capacity within the Ministry of Finance, Economy and Investments as well as such capacity within the Enemalta Corporation, Malta Resources Authority, and Malta Transport Authority.

Recommendation 12
The Ministry of Resources and Rural Affairs should establish and lead a Working Group with the support of the National Statistics Office and including key stakeholders in order to establish by no later than December 2009 a national statistics framework for Climate Change.

Recommendation 13
This National Strategy for Policy and Abatement Measures Relating to the Reduction of Greenhouse Gases (NSPAM) should be continuously under review so that it is calibrated on an on-going basis to reflect new circumstances and emerging technologies. The first review should take place in 2012.

Recommendation 14
The Minister responsible for Resources and Rural Affairs should give positive consideration to the tabling of this report at the House of Representatives for discussion and subsequent approval in order to signal in the most demonstrative manner possible that the politics of Climate Change is above partisan politics.

Recommendation 15
Given the transcending impact of Climate Change across most sectors of public policy and government operations, the Government should consider constituting a high powered Inter-Ministerial Committee for Climate Change at the earliest opportunity possible with the task of securing cohesion and congruency amongst the political and administrative stakeholders, establish political and administrative priorities, and maintain political stewardship and pressure for the adoption of the appropriate abatement measures.

Recommendation 16
The necessary leadership and organisational capacity to drive and sustain Climate Change measures is established in 2010 by means of the consolidation of related functions spread across various government departments and entities in a Department for Climate Change within the Ministry for Resources and Rural Affairs.

Recommendation 17
Appropriate government stakeholders are urged to assume a leadership role to implement the recommendation of the National Strategic Plan for Research and Innovation: 2007 – 2010 to design by 2010, and implement by 2015 an R&D&I strategy for the designated Environment and Energy Resources platform of strategic importance.
Recommendation 18
The Environment and Energy Resources vertical R&D&I strategy should seek to direct financing of research towards elements that have a direct impact on energy conservation, measures to reduce CO2 emissions from entering into the atmosphere, measures directed to optimise the use of new renewable technology in Malta’s sea territory, and measures directed to develop an indigenous biofuel source through marine algae.

Recommendation 19
The organisational capacity for R&D&I in the energy and water utilities in Malta should be strengthened and significant financing, as from 2010, should be made available to allow them to undertake field R&D&I that will enable them to experiment with techniques, processes, et al that may result in more efficient measures on energy generation and Reverse Osmosis energy conservation.

Recommendation 20
The installation of the new 100MW – 150MW generation plant at Delimara Power Station is a strategic national abatement project that would directly reduce CO2 emissions and the regulatory and implementation process should be given intra-government fast track processing, similar to other national projects, so that the plant is operational as planned in 2011.

Recommendation 21
The substitution of fuel oil to natural gas for the powering of the generation plants is to be considered as a national strategic abatement initiative which will have a significant impact on Greenhouse Gases emissions, and thus, the appropriate mobilisation is embarked upon to secure that the necessary infrastructure and logistical capacity as well as the appropriate conversion technologies requiring installation at the plants are in place by 2015.

Recommendation 22
Major enterprises and industries that have their own generation capacity should undertake the appropriate analysis to seriously consider substitution of fossil oil by natural gas in order to generate, in part or in full, their energy needs.

Recommendation 23
The establishment of a sub-sea electricity inter-connector between Malta and Sicily, unless new research findings indicate differently, is to be considered as a national strategic abatement initiative which will have a significant impact on Greenhouse Gases emissions, and, thus, the appropriate mobilisation is embarked upon to secure that the necessary infrastructure is in place by the earliest possible date.

Recommendation 24
Major industrial installations should review their energy auxiliaries and replace inefficient equipment by new advanced technology to, on the one part, reduce their energy demand, and on the other part to act as a Greenhouse Gas abatement measure.
Recommendation 25
The implementation of the smart electricity and water meters is to be considered as a national strategic abatement initiative, which will have a significant impact on Greenhouse Gases emissions through the implementation of direct demand management, and thus, it is essential that the appropriate mobilisation is embarked upon to secure that the targeted successful closure of the initiative by 2012 is met.

Recommendation 26
The price of electricity generated and distributed by the Utility should always reflect the true cost, though excluding inefficiencies, of generation so that behavioural change in terms of both consumption patterns and of investment in alternative technologies is induced.

Recommendation 27
The cost-benefits of replacing the current Energy Benefit support policy, in part or in whole, by a policy that finances the capital investment of replacing old white / brown goods and lighting et al to modern energy efficient appliances, within those households designated to be within a fuel poverty category, should be evaluated on the basis of the Shadow Price of Carbon by Government in 2009.

Recommendation 28
The Climate Change Committee positively notes the introduction, in the 2009 National Budget, of the Business Advisory Scheme to support industry and enterprise in the undertaking of energy audits, and proposes, given this is a significant positive abatement measure for the reduction of CO2 emissions, that the scheme should be maintained in the long term and continuously strengthened in terms of the quantum of fiscal support provided.

Recommendation 29
The Government should, dependent on the pace of roll-out of the Smart Meter technology, design a policy of differentiated tariffs resulting in lower pricing for electricity consumed during non-peak hours.

Recommendation 30
An Efficient Energy One Stop Shop Portal is set-up within the Department of Climate Change to provide a continuous review of existing technologies, new technologies, emerging technologies, their impact in terms of €/kW saved, CO2 emissions abated, prices, and self service market for the on-line procurement of such technologies directly from technology suppliers and providers locally as well as overseas and to electronically integrate all government Climate Change related back-office interaction – whether this relates to Enemalta Corporation, MRA, MEPA and fiscal incentives – so that regulatory and procedural processes are cleared within fast service times.

Recommendation 31
Malta must embrace energy efficiency lighting and the 2009 Budget measure for the distribution of free energy lamps to each household should be further complemented in the coming years by a strong and sustained education and communications campaign and other fiscal measures so that 75% of lighting of households, offices and enterprises by 2015 will be energy saving lighting technology.

Recommendation 32
The Office of Fair Competition should periodically survey the prices of energy efficiency technologies to ensure that there are no artificial obstacles that may inhibit the penetration of such technologies.

Recommendation 33
Responsibility for street lighting should be centralised and the Government, should as from 2010, embark on the rationalisation of the street lighting infrastructure including the replacement, where appropriate, of street lighting by passive reflectors and ‘cats eyes’, and the national implementation of street lighting dimming technology to be completed by 2015.

Recommendation 34
Whilst the Climate Change Committee positively notes the proposal in 2009 Budget to introduce energy efficiency information on all domestic appliances, it believes that such information should also be mandated vis-a-vis commercial technologies, vehicles, et al. It also believes that the Government should complement such a scheme by aggressively, and in a sustainable manner, disseminating knowledge and information on CO2 emissions abated, kW saved et al of the different technologies, through the broadest use of media channels.

Recommendation 35
Whilst the work is being carried out by the Malta Standards Authority, to transpose into local legislation the Framework Directive for the Eco-design of Energy Using Products, the Government should aggressively and in a sustainable manner disseminate knowledge and information on this matter through the broadest use of media channels.

Recommendation 36
The Government should facilitate the national uptake of A+ and A++ energy class appliances by introducing an eco-contribution tax, which revenue should be directed towards a special Climate Change fund, on equipment with lower energy classification.

Recommendation 37
The energy consumption of buildings constitutes a demand of 30% to 40% of electricity consumption and it is thus of strategic importance that a review of the implementation of the Legal Notice 238/2006 on energy performance in buildings is carried out at the earliest possible, so that lessons are learnt, policies reviewed, information disseminated and enforcement strengthened.

Recommendation 38
The Government should review the appropriate planning policies to introduce, in January 2010, the necessary amendments that will mandate that all development and re-construction works related to buildings are constructed with the appropriate plumbing insulation works to allow for the seamless plugging-in of solar related alternative technology solutions.
Recommendation 39
The appropriate Government entities should hold discussions with the University of Malta on (a) whether the undergraduate course content should be strengthened in terms of energy-efficiency building design; and (b) introduction of postgraduate programmes specialising in the discipline within the Mediterranean generally and Malta specifically.

Recommendation 40
The appropriate government entity should hold discussions with the Ministry of Education to obtain priority ranking in request for sponsorship through the Malta Government Scholarship Fund in postgraduate studies on energy efficiency building design.

Recommendation 41
Malta’s approach to the application of Renewable Energy Sources must be a mix of the most applicable technologies that are most suited for Malta: balancing within such a mix all types of technologies available today and in the future.

Recommendation 42
Photo Voltaic technology should be one of the strategic technologies of the renewable energy sources technology mix and directed to achieve 4% of the 10% reduction of energy generation through renewable energy sources.

Recommendation 43
Government in 2009 should transfer the policy instrument vis-a-vis Photo-Voltaic technology penetration into a strategic initiative directed to achieve 75% of the 4% Photo-Voltaic energy generation by 2012: that is prior to the start of Phase III of the European Trading Emission Scheme.

Recommendation 44
The Government should carry out an assessment, that incorporates the shadow price of carbon, on the introduction of a strategic initiative that seeks to achieve 75% of the 4% energy generated through PV technology by 2012 directed towards:
a) Domestic users: through the financing of 60% of the capital and installation costs of the PV technology.
b) Industrial and enterprise users: the introduction of a feed-in-tariff scheme that is significantly more attractive to that in place today.

Recommendation 45
The surface area on roofs of public buildings and of buildings and public areas in Industrial Parks and Estates should be optimised so that their surface area is made available for the accelerated penetration of Photo-Voltaic technology.

Recommendation 46
In order to further establish access to renewable energy by industry and commercial entities, the Government should designate land sites suitable for alternative technology. These sites should meet all planning requirements and have ready connectivity to the energy grid.

Recommendation 47
A policy directed to stimulate use of alternative energy generation brings to the fore the right of access to solar energy; and in this regard the Climate Change Committee recommends (i) that the right of servitude is extended to include the installation of solar water heaters; and (ii) persons who have no access to surface area to install Photo Voltaic technology are provided by Government with alternative surface area.

Recommendation 48
If the economics of wind technology show that, in comparison to other abatement measures, such technology provides for every €1 invested in the technology optimum value in terms of CO2/tce reduced (as well as in the cost of energy), than wind technology should constitute a key component in the renewable technologies resource mix required to meet the GHG emissions 10% target.

Recommendation 49
In order to build the appropriate technical human capacity, discussions by the appropriate Government entities should be initiated with the Malta Council for Arts, Science and Technology so that applied training programmes relating to renewable technologies are introduced in the near future.

Recommendation 51
The Malta Standards Authority and the constituted body representing the renewable technology sector should team up to design and introduce appropriate accreditation programmes for staff, and firms that invest in such programmes would be awarded an Energy Quality Certification and will be marketed through the Efficient Energy One Stop Shop Portal.

Recommendation 52
The application and use of Carbon Capture and Storage technology due to the lack of suitable local storage sites is not expected to play a significant role in Malta’s specific efforts to reduce GHG emissions, except in the context of potentially supporting CCS schemes in mainland Europe through the purchase of electricity from such plant, through the inter-connector.

Recommendation 53
The Biofuel market in Malta should continue to be expanded within the constraints of the EU sustainability criteria for Biofuel, and with specific focus directed towards secondary Biofuel sources such as recycled domestic and industrial oil waste.

Recommendation 54
The Government should initiate measures to introduce autogas as an accessible and affordable substitute for fuel for vehicle drivers, with autogas to be available for distribution by not later than 2010.

Recommendation 50
The Government should establish short term and long term internships that will be directed towards undergraduates and graduates specialising in different disciplines relating to Climate Change in order to foster the development of such human capital.

Recommendation 55
With the potential introduction of autogas and the presence of Biofuel a critical mass with regards to substitutes for fuel can now be available in the local market – which in turn should be sustained by aggressive knowledge building and dissemination of information to drivers.

Recommendation 56
In a country that suffers from chronic water supply shortages, and which produces desalinated water at a great expense, and which is facing major difficulties with its water table due to illegal, yet sustained water extraction the current practice not to invoke legal provisions that mandate that buildings must have rainwater capture reservoirs or wells should be repealed and the legislation should be enforced with effect from 1st July 2009.
Recommendation 57
The Government should introduce a fiscal scheme, in the period 2010 to 2013, to incentivise domestic users, by subsidising 50% of the costs required, to integrate their water in their wells or rainwater capture reservoirs with the plumbing system for secondary use and sustain this initiative with an aggressive knowledge and information campaign.

Recommendation 58
The Government should embark on the implementation of the Agriculture Waste Management Plan as from 2009.

Recommendation 59
The growing success of the programmes for the collection and recovery of recyclable municipal solid waste should continue to be reinforced.

Recommendation 60
The Government should broaden the recovery process by 2015 to include separate collection and subsequent recovery of at least 36,000 of recyclable waste and 35,000 tonnes of clean organic fraction.

Recommendation 61
The Government should seek the appropriate infrastructure to enable for the thermal treatment of waste by 2013.

Recommendation 62
Malta has embarked on an extensive investment initiative to re-build its sewage infrastructure which presents an opportunity to incorporate, at the design stage of the new sewage infrastructure, an appropriate distribution infrastructure (network or other cost effective distribution which may include reservoirs) for the use of treated sewage water, subject that the source of treated sewage meets the appropriate quality levels, in agriculture and industry - thereby reducing the need for the extraction of groundwater and thus contributing to reduce the current deficit in Malta’s freshwater budget.

Recommendation 63
Bottleneck Junctions, such as Kappara Junction, which create congestion at all times of the day, should be given priority in the road infrastructure upgrading programme.

Recommendation 64
The Government should reconsider the policy of building / reducing roads to single lanes due to increasing congestion leading to increased CO2 emissions.

Recommendation 65
The introduction of a traffic direction variable lane should be considered, on those roads which could accommodate this concept as this would allow a reduction of congestion during peak hours because the traffic direction variable lane would become an additional lane in the direction of the heavy traffic flow.

Recommendation 66
Intelligent traffic lights should be introduced with priority given to areas of high congestion.

Recommendation 67
The Government should consider setting up a traffic information centre to keep the Public updated on the traffic flow situation.

Recommendation 68
The Government and local councils should re-schedule repair and maintenance to work to non peak hours in order to reduce artificially created congestion and in this regard the respective employees’representatives should support the re-design of such work schedules.

Recommendation 69
The Government with the support of the relevant Unions should consider staggering working hours of its officials working from Floriana and Valletta in order to alleviate congestion.
Recommendation 70
The Government, with the support of the relevant employees’ representative, should consider a staggered schedule for the start and close of schools in order to alleviate congestion.

Recommendation 71
The Government should ride on its successes in the implementation of tele-working, and encourage more widespread use of this facility – a measure which should also be adopted by the private sector.

Recommendation 72
The Climate Change Committee supports the public transport reform recommendation presented by the Ministry of Infrastructure Transport and Communication including the establishment of intercommunity transportation which, were so appropriate, should be serviced by electric mini buses.

Recommendation 73
The Climate Change Committee supports the public transport reform recommendation presented by the Ministry of Infrastructure Transport and Communication to establish that a Water Taxis system should be introduced to service the Grand Harbour and Sliema Creek area and adds that the assessment of the electric tram system, which is currently underway, should take into account the Shadow Price of Carbon.

Recommendation 74
All means of public transport should be equipped with remote telemetry devises so as to provide real time information on the estimated time of arrival at designated stops so as to provide a more efficient integrated public transportation system thus encouraging more use of public transportation.

Recommendation 75
The Climate Change Committees agrees with the public transport reform strategy to introduce a new fleet of buses of different passenger capacities (in line with the type of route served) and adds that, to the extent possible, these should be powered by alternative technology and should incorporate the best carbon abatement technologies possible.

Recommendation 76
The Climate Change Committee proposes that complementary to the White Taxi reform strategy, the Government should encourage the further introduction of electrically powered taxis as currently servicing the Valletta Park and Ride system.

Recommendation 77
The Government should, consistent with the Government’s strategy to establish Gozo as the Eco-Island, consider introducing Electric or LPG powered buses in Gozo by 2016.

Recommendation 78
Riding on the success of the park-and-ride system for Valletta / Floriana, further park-and-ride systems should be introduced to service major town shopping and other business communities in order to reduce congestion and unnecessary mileage in the search for parking.

Recommendation 79
The Government should introduce as a mandatory requirement for all heavy commercial vehicles to be equipped with remote telemetry devises which measure CO2 emissions on a constant basis, whereby heavy commercial vehicles which surpass an agreed threshold of CO2 emissions will not be allowed to remain on the road unless works are performed on the vehicle to bring CO2 emissions in line within the maximum threshold, or the maximum load allowed for the vehicle is reduced.

Recommendation 80
The Government should consider the more widespread use of pollution and emission monitoring stations, that apart from measuring air quality, also measure CO2 emission levels.

Recommendation 81
The Climate Change Committee proposes that Malta closely follows developments in the EU vis-a-vis hydrogen vehicles and the supporting filling network and considers, where so appropriate, the potential piloting of such vehicles and infrastructure, primarily in Gozo, under EU financing schemes such as the CIty-VITAlity-Sustainability (CIVITAS).

Recommendation 82
The Government should demand of its heads of entities, departments and authorities to meet the following targets as at 31st December 2013 – on 2008 base figures:
• Reduction in general carbon emissions where so appropriate: 15%
• Reduction in carbon emissions from government road vehicles: 12%
• Increase in energy efficiency: 10%
• Energy sourced from RES: 10%
• Reduction in waste: 5%
• Increased recycling: 10%
• Reduction in water consumption: 10%

Recommendation 83
The Government should establish a Climate Change Target Attainment list that ranks all government departments, entities and authorities on their respective performance on the Climate Change targets set for them for the period 1st June 2009 to 31st December 2013 with such list to be placed in the public domain annually.

Recommendation 84
An educational strategy that is based on the principles of accessibility of information, good practice, targeting specific consumer sectors, and that promotes the necessary culture change in how we look at and use energy, is designed by 2010 and aggressively embarked upon in a sustained manner as early as possible in that same year.

Recommendation 85
Achieving the culture change necessary through the promotion of ethical behaviour and a value system on Climate Change and environmental issues is a long term process which would benefit if multi-party political support is secured.

Recommendation 86
The Government establishes the infrastructure and implements a sustained and continuous public awareness campaign drawing on the lessons gained in the process leading to the implementation of the Euro.

Recommendation 87
A National Policy on Environment Education is designed in 2009 and introduced in 2010 as an integral part of the National Curriculum.



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21 January 2009

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