EIA for Gozo tunnel must include feasibility study, Alternattiva Demokratika says

AD has demanded a detailed analysis on the impact of the Malta-Gozo tunnel on the water resources along the whole route of the tunnel

The proposed tunnel route
The proposed tunnel route

Alternattiva Demokratika, the Green Party, has submitted a representation on the Malta-Gozo tunnel environmental impact assessment, demanding a wider evaluation of the proposal.

AD is emphasising that in addition to the normal areas an EIA investigates, the tunnel should be examined in view of the objectives of the National Transport Strategy 2050 and the National Transport Master Plan 2025. “Such an examination should also lead to the consideration of alternative solutions to the proposed tunnel,” AD chairperson Carmel Cacopardo said.

The other points include that geological studies are concluded and be examined critically; that preliminary designs should be concluded, and on this basis preliminary realistic costings be subjected to a critical analysis, together with a realistic feasibility study.

AD also demanded a detailed analysis on the impact of the tunnel on the water resources along the whole route of the tunnel, in particular the impacts on the Miżieb aquifer in view of Malta’s commitments in the Water Framework Directive of the EU.

And it said that a detailed analysis of the tunnel’s impact on the Pwales Valley ecosystem, including most importantly the Simar Nature Reserve, an EU Natura 2000 site, should form part of the EIA studies in view of Malta’s commitments spelt out in the Habitats Directive of the EU.

“This will ensure that all potential major impacts of the proposed Malta-Gozo tunnel are examined in detail,” Cacopardo said.

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