MaltaToday | 16 July 2008 | Letters

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LETTERS| Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Noel Farrugia, far from a superfluous role

I refer to the article entitled “Joseph’s choice – unity before quality” by James Debono (MaltaToday Midweek, 9 July). I beg to differ from the opinion expressed regarding the new portfolio of the Hon. Noel Farrugia MP. I have worked closely with Mr Farrugia for several years, specifically during the years preceding the 2003 and 2008 General Election campaigns.
I would like to point out that far from being awarded “probably the most superfluous role” and far from being “the unlikeliest candidate to speak on Third World issues”, Mr Noel Farrugia is well qualified to carry out the duties falling under his portfolio of international development aid and can play an important role in fulfilling his new duties.
Mr Farrugia has for several years represented the Malta Labour Party at meetings with foreign leaders and at several international fora. Furthermore, he has gained vast experience working with Third World countries through his personal work as Board Director for the Global Institute for Strategic Economic Development (GISED
With his impeccable diplomatic approach to problem-solving, excellent public-speaking skills and vast experience on the international stage, Noel Farrugia can help to consolidate the MLP’s past contributions to the issue of International Development Aid and also improve upon them.

Desmond Zammit Marmarà

Saliba and the small peaches

“A peach tree stands in our back yard,” wrote K. Marshall Strom. “Unpruned, the tree grew big and leafy. It was loaded with peaches, although the fruit was disappointingly small and tasteless.”
No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. These words were not uttered by Joe Saliba – far from it.
The outgoing (how apt) General Secretary of the PN has managed to allow the PN to grow big only in shrewdness, deceit and shamelessness. The peaches are so sour, so tasteless and so small in nuts. The only large section is the negative part of spin, electioneering and manipulation of the ‘truth’.
This chap took the party over with a promise to cleanse it from within – I remember others in the PN quoting this Saliba sound-bite. How utterly disappointed we, the honest and well-meaning members of that party, were to see the inner core consolidate its grip on the leadership and subliminally inject its venom in the party.
But, at last, the honest party members can sing good riddance to a ‘has-been’. May I augur that the new GS would harvest righteousness and peace through discipline with a social conscience.

Jo Said

Need for green energy

The ever increasing oil market prices are affecting the whole world but here in Malta we know for sure that during the last 25 years or so the Maltese government has done nothing or close to nothing to provide people and local industries with incentives to use cheaper and greener ways to produce electricity, thus minimising the effect of the increase in energy prices on our lives and economy.
We live in a country that enjoys good sunlight all year round, thus having very few days where we do not get usable sunlight for solar power generation. But solar energy and solar power generation is remotely used, and still expensive. Also, for more than three fourths of the year we have winds capable enough of generating electricity, but wind-powered generators are still something of the future here in Malta. Finally, being an island we are totally surrounded by sea, from where we can get wave energy to produce electrical energy.
But though having all these types of energy readily available for use, we are still getting all our electrical energy from expensive and polluting oil burning power stations. Lately I read an article on Iceland, an island which, unlike Malta, has limited sunlight all year round, but tough having limited sunlight they have another energy asset and they use it as much and as efficiently as they can.
This kind of energy is Geothermal Energy which through Geothermal power stations generates electrical power at a cheaper price for the whole country.
This is because Geothermal energy is as abundant in Iceland as sunlight is in Malta and extremely cheap, with no side effects whatsoever on the earth's climate and on the environment as sunlight is here in Malta.
But the main difference is that in Iceland, they use this abundant source and here in Malta we do not use our abundant source of energy, but still use old and inefficient power plants which are very expensive to operate and also present a hazard to the earth's climate, the environment and for the whole Maltese population, which suffers from illnesses and conditions which are created and diffused from the pollution these old oil burning power plants are producing.
We are a small country, and despite being over populated we have to work together irrespective of our beliefs to start using these free and greener energy sources so that we can live a better life in all senses. The current power stations are expensive to operate, they are a big pollution hazard for Malta and its inhabitants, and thus we have to drastically minimize their use to the minimum.
The change over has to start from the Maltese Government and all European Governments, with the reduction of taxes and added costs on all green sources of energy producing devises so that everyone could afford these devises and start using greener energy sources thus reducing reliability on oil and also reducing pollution which in turn would reduce illnesses and conditions which require more funds to cure and to get rid of by the health sector.

Steve Borg
Via email

Clarification – “The Boatmen’s Coop”

Last week, it was incorrectly stated in “The Boatmen’s Coop” that Etienne Bonello Dupuis was the deputy mayor of San Gwann. Mr Bonello Dupuis is a Nationalist councillor of San Gwann but not deputy mayor. The error is regretted.

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