Minister launches review of Strategic Plan for Environment and Development

Environment and planning minister Aaron Farrugia says Planning Authority will start review of SPED

Aaron Farrugia
Aaron Farrugia

Minister for the environment and planning Aaron Farrugia has announced he will carry out a review of the SPED (Strategic Plan for the Environment and Development).

The SPED replaced the Structure Plan, Malta’s ‘bible’ on planning and development rules, when the Muscat administration split up the former Malta Environment and Planning Authority into separate planning and environment arms.

The demerger gave construction and development the upper hand in policies where the Environment and Resources Authority was toothless to temper incursions into rural areas and urban conservation zones.

“I have instructed the Planning Authority to commence a review of the Strategic Plan for the Environment and Development and expect very clear and definitive timeframes. I have also asked the Environment and Resources Authority to have an active role.”

Farrugia hinted at “a one-time opportunity to reconcile planning and the environment” and said he will take into “account people’s thoughts and feelings and the reality of a small island state with very limited land at its disposal.”

“Developed land always evolves and is one of the rings in our chain of economic growth. Yet, it is time to also focus on our wellbeing as a people, while respecting the limits imposed on us by our natural environment.”