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  • ESG Radio Newsletter July 21st 2011

    Hello, today’s newsletter will focus on a number of different issues which we hope you will find of interest.

    To begin with news that the Gib Govt is planning to purchase additional generating capacity for our electricity needs is met with concern from several ESG members. Although we were assured by Govt at the turn of this year that the new replacement power station project was underway and would be in place with no further delays, there is no change whatsoever in the present situation to suggest any progress. No ground has been broken and at a key opportunity to demonstrate Govts commitment to proceed and introduce a state of the art replacement power station, we are told, via house proceedings that the project will take between 12 to 24 months with no date of commencement or completion offered. We do not understand why this is the case. Govt needs to realise that the impacts from the three aging stations are dreadful in terms of quality of life for hundreds if not thousands of residents with offending smells and incessant noise levels and the very real risk these pose to health with air emissions proven to cause a variety of health ailments ranging from minor to severe. We need action and we need this now.

    Another topic of current interest is the recent launch of the Urban Bike Scheme; a project with many green credentials, which surprisingly, has not rec’d much public reaction. Most of the comments we have rec’d have been of concerns of safety given that our road infrastructure is not planned to be adapted to be used by a considerable increase in bicycle numbers. We do believe that some changes are necessary and have outlined these in our Wish List under Traffic issues. Please refer to this paper on our website. www.esg-gib.net .

    Another development of interest and concern to those who care about our natural environment is news from Spanish env. groups of the threat of development of one of the remaining woodlands across the border to us which is often referred to as the military zone – this area provides one of the last green corridors from Alcornocales National Park to the coast and must be protected. The link to a petition against any development in this area and background information can be found on our website and we urge as many people as possible to please sign this.

    CUTW programme is now underway with people signing up and plans being laid for the seventh participation by the Gibraltar community. On the negative side, recent marine and field surveys have shown that serious littering and dumping issues continue in out of the way places and so we know we shall have our hands full once again this year.

    You can help us clean our homeland and beautiful coastal environment by calling 200-48996 or mobile 54960000. Also email details through to esg@gibtelecom.net and we shall get back to you as soon as possible. Thank you.
    Related to CUTW this year is a brand new workshop being held in conjunction with the Summer Sports Programme at the Sports Complex. One of our colleagues is holding Green Workshops with young children focusing on creativity and learning about our world and need to look after it. With this year’s CUTW theme being: “Our Place, Our Planet, Our Responsibility”, the workshop aims to promote these important aims while at the same time providing an enjoyable and creative experience. There is still time to enrol your child by contacting Anna Maza on 54024321. You can also email details to: ania.maza@gmail.com
    A reminder to all CUTW team leaders that we shall be holding our first key planning meeting in early August. Details will be sent to all teams.
    One quick word to those listening with concerns of ongoing air pollution or sewage at sea is that the Environmental Agency has now set up an answering service to direct callers to appropriate numbers outside of office hours. The number to call is 200-70620.
    That’s it for now. Thanks for listening.

    Petition to stop Development in Woodlands -Spanish

    Click on following link to sign petition…….

    [Ciberacción] Protección para el bosque litoral de Guadalquitón

    15 de julio, Campo de Gibraltar | Visitas: 967 |

    La finca de Guadalquitón, incluye la zona mejor conservada del litoral mediterráneo de esta comarca, con playas vírgenes, complejos dunares, el único bosque litoral de alcornoques y acebuches que se conserva en la zona y una enorme biodiversidad, con numerosas especies catalogadas y protegidas legalmente.. cuentan con una Declaración de Impacto Ambiental negativa de la Consejería de Medio Ambiente (CMA). El POT las declara Zona de Interés Territorial, pero se dejan excluidas dos zonas tras las dunas donde se permiten aparcamientos e instalaciones hoteleras.

    Entendemos que el POT informado favorablemente por Comisión de Redacción en fecha de 9 de marzo de 2.011 y por la Comisión Provincial de Ordenación del Territorio y Urbanismo (CPOTU) el 17 de mayo de 2.011, en relación al área de Guadalquitón no respeta las previsiones de la Ley 9/2006, al no integrar y proteger adecuadamente los valores medioambientales de dicha zona, contraviniendo los sucesivos informes evacuados desde la Delegación Provincial de Medio Ambiente de Cádiz y posibilitando, en definitiva el desarrollo de actividades de índole urbanística dentro de Guadalquitón.

    En estos espacios sin clasificar dentro del sector 001-GL “Guadalquitón”, que se extiende entre el alcornocal y la playa, o manchas blancas en el Plano Ordenación de Usos y Protección de Recursos, están dentro de unidades ambientales formadas por vegetación dunar relictica, alcornoques litorales, bosque cerrado de alcornoque, lagunas litorales, bosque medio de alcornoque y tomillares xerofíticos con brecina, que, sumadas a otras unidades ambientales homogéneas de menor valor pero que también son importantes para conservar. Se observan taxones dispersos de distintas especies protegidas por la legislación vigente y que están catalogadas como amenazadas, vulnerables y en peligro de extinción. En definitiva el sector denominado “Guadalquitón” lo conforman un conjunto de unidades ambientales funcionales, interactivas y originales, que cumplen con la condición de un ecosistema altamente sensible, a cualquier alteración o transformación urbanística, turístico o deportivo, por mínimo que sea.

    Aunque responsables de la COPV nos han insistído en que en esas “manchas blancas” no cabía nada, nos tememos, que la finalidad de tales manchas blancas, incluidas en el Plano Ordenación de Usos y Protección de Recursos, sean la de localizar hoteles de lujo e instalaciones deportivas.

    Es por lo que solicitamos la protección estricta de la totalidad de la finca Guadalquitón como Zona de Interés Territorial, es decir, todos los suelos comprendidos entre el Río Guadalquitón, la Urbanización de Sotogrande y el corredor litoral, como ha informado la Delegación Provincial de Medio Ambiente, PROHIBIENDO absolutamente cualquier tipo de desarrollo o actuación urbanística (sea del tipo que fuera) dentro del referido ámbito. Es inadmisible que se pretenda construir en la zona dunar. Oponiéndonos a cualquier actuación de uso hotelero, viales de tráfico rodado, aparcamientos, instalaciones deportivas, y pedimos que se valore el interés ambiental de estas áreas sin clasificar dentro del sector 001-GL “Guadalquitón”.

    Se debe garantizar la protección de los terrenos que unen Borondo y Guadalquitón con el Parque Natural de Los Alcornocales, e instamos a la Junta de Andalucía para que estas fincas se protejan y entren a formar parte de la red de Espacios Protegidos de Andalucía como “Corredor Verde y Los Alcornocales”. Estas fincas a conservar son: Guadalquitón, Borondo, Dientes Bajo y Alto, La Alcaidesa, Pinar del Rey, Sierra del Arca, Sierra Carbonera, Los Portichuelos y Alcaidesa hacia el Parque de los Alcornocales por la finca del Chapatal y Los Chaparrales. Un entronque se haría desde el Estuario del río Guadiaro, parte de la Sierra Almenara, aledaños del Hozgaranta hacia Castellar por la finca de la Almoraima. Es indispensable salvaguardar y proteger una finca denominada Mojones Blancos de unas 50 has. Esta sería la conexión de estos dos corredores, otro desde la playa de Borondo–Guadalquitón, y otro desde la playa de La Línea Sierra Carbonera–Los Portichuelos.


    Fund Raising Swimmers Celebrate their success in the UK Press -watch out here for news of their incredible experience to be posted shortly


    We would like to promote a brand new summer art workshop being held at the Sports Centre which is being held on Tuesdays and Thursdays during the Summer Sports Programme. This workshop is entirely focused on environmental themes and as such has the total support of the ESG under the CUTW Banner. Children of all ages are being invited to contact a young lady called Anna Maza on : 54024321 and email to register at: ania.maza@gmail.com .

    The art produced at the workshop can help spread important messages about our environment and our responsiblity for looking after our planet. With the CUTW Parade and Exhibition taking place on September 17th in Main Street and at the John Mackintosh Square, it will provide another opportunity for the artwork produced by the youngsters at the summer workshop to be displayed and help raise awareness.

    So, why not sign up your child to have a fun filled summer by joining Anna at her Kids at Art workshop making Green Art on Tuesdays and Thursdays for the next month or so.

    ESG Radio Broadcast 7th July 2011

    ESG Radio Broadcast 7th July 2011
    Since our last broadcast several environmental developments have taken place so we’ll do our best to highlight those of particular interest:-

    1) With summer upon us and most of us outdoors much of the time, our physical environment and its health, is never more apparent than at present. Therefore issues of sewage, pollution from power stations and bunkering, dust and rubble on our beaches, traffic and noise pollution come to the fore as we receive numerous calls from local residents wondering why we continue to suffer from these problems.

    These problems are actually present all year round and is why the ESG fights its corner as we do to press for change. However as long as highly ranked politicians consider the environment to be a single issue matter, nothing radical is going to change. This is what we, as a community, must address.

    2)The ESG is working hard and in discussion with all political parties pushing for action on these issues. Our comprehensive Wish List has been tabled with all parties and we hope is now adding to the discussions we are hearing in the hot house of political debate taking place this week. It does take considerable energy and political will to implement changes at the core of many of our decision making centres to redress the balance of progress and financial stability with improving our physical environment, and therefore quality of life. Projects like the new power station, sewage plant, and a long hard look at the impacts from bunkering and other oil related industry therefore critical.

    3)Gibraltar continues to wait to hear results of the investigations into the tank fire – how long will this take the ESG asks? In the meantime we hear fragments of information here and there about future plans for the area surrounding the tanks site and hope that Govt will issue a full and detailed report of its thinking on this matter so that the public is informed before major decisions are taken.

    The fire was a major incident and reflected poor decision making and poor regulation. The community deserves to know what Govt understands happened and how it is ensuring that accidents of this type will never recur. We are entitled to such information Under the Freedom of Access to Env Information and simply, because anything that happens in Gibraltar affects us all.

    4) Another eyebrow raising moment was the recent announcement by CEPSA management of the investment it is making at its San Roque plant to radically lower pollution levels – pollution levels by the way, it has NEVER EVER admitted to produce in the first place.

    These toxic emissions are carcinogenic and cause all manner of disease and one has to ask what compensation is morally owing to communities who continue to pay the price of this industry’s growing expansion and profits with their health and many, even, with their lives.

    5) CUTW 2011 is now 10 weeks away! It’s official!! Today CUTW Australian Director Ian Kiernan sent a message to members throughout the world reminding us that it’s only through community involvement at a local level that global changes can be made. If local communities value a healthy environment and conserve its biodiversity exercising civic pride, then success is only a matter of time.

    We therefore will invest considerable energy over the next two months to ensure Gibraltar benefits from this important campaign and hope to get your support too!

    Plse contact us at on tel: 200-48996 or email us on: esg@gibtelecom.net . Donations also welcome. Thank you.

    Gibraltar’s Insight Magazine will run CUTW related articles over the next two months with information and detailed analysis of the issues concerned so make sure you pick up a copy!

    Education/Information/Facilities and Enforcement being key to a cleaner Gibraltar.

    6) Some inspiring news for you is the length some of us will go to to protect natures incredible wildlife with the story of two regular blokes from the UK, Chris and Adam, who two days ago swam 26 miles non-stop across the Strait and back, to raise awareness globally of the need to stop illegal whale hunting and killing of dolphins through pollution and intensive fishing practices.

    We hope you will be hearing directly from the swimmers themselves today whose motivation is to raise funds for the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society that actively carry out invaluable work to conserve these magnificent creatures.

    Please therefore, take a moment and go to: http://www.justgiving.com/Swim4Whales. Any donation, large or small will be gratefully rec’d recognising the mammoth effort made by these impressive individuals.

    We leave now with our message to: Stay in touch, enjoy your summer and use the bins – and if you can’t find one, take it home!!

    Thanks for listening!


    Chris and Adam, two brits who took on the awesome challenge of swimming the Strait and back in one go were successful and completed their marathon in just under ten hours!! Well done to you both!

    The ESG wishes to congratulate these very brave individuals whose efforts to draw attention to the plight affecting whales and dolphins due to illegal hunting, capture and intensive fishing practices, should be applauded and certainly recognised by sending them a donation – whatever you can afford – to help their campaign.

    Please send to:http://www.justgiving.com/Swim4Whales
    We shall update you with news of how the campaign evolves.

    Sewage at East Side

    ESG Press Release 1st July 2011

    ESG remains concerned about growing sewage pollution at East Side beaches

    News today in the Spanish media that stretches of beach closest to Gibraltar on the East Side are being closed due to higher than acceptable levels of sewage should ring alarm bells locally.

    The ESG urges the public and beach goers in particular to be extra vigilant regarding sewage pollution and to immediately notify the Life Guards as well as call the Environmental Agency to report the matter should such pollution be seen at sea.

    The number to call is 200-70620.

    We understand that Government is closely monitoring the situation.


    See following link for full Europa Sur story: