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    The ESG has attended several meetings in recent weeks both with the Ministry for the Environment and the Development and Planning Commission.

    With the Ministry for the Environment we can confirm that the meetings have, in the main, been extensive, detailed, and reasonably positive.
    Clearly what will utlimately decide true progress will be in the concrete measures that the new Government will implement and we wait with great interest to see what these shall be. The ESG is also planning on holding a series of direct meetings with Government technical staff to discuss issues that form part of our core campaigns.

    Last week saw the first public DPC meeting. The agenda was placed online and published in local newspapers but the details for subsequent meetings will only be placed online. We shall help remind our members and the public in general when these details are published.

    At the meeting the ESG raised some questions of concern regarding some “minor” installations of telecommunication equipment, Maida Vale application, and then wider points under “any other business” when we asked where we could tackle review of the planning process itself, policy, etc.

    We were advised that the DPC forum could be used for such purpose and that special focus meetings could be called for when particular aspects could be discussed. It felt like we were pushing on an open door and this was very encouraging. Both Town Planners were very thorough and professional in delivering information to the Commission.

    RADIO Newsletter 260112

    On Planning issues in Gibraltar:-

    • In our last newsletter we talked about the changes taking place within Gibraltar’s planning procedures. Indeed we have already witnessed these changes in action as the ESG, in our newly appointed role as part of the DPC, has attended the first public meeting of the Development and Planning Commission. This is a huge and very positive step for Gibraltar. Many in the community, as well as the ESG, have long called for the opening up of the planning process, making it more transparent and accountable. This is now what is on offer with the agendas and minutes of all meetings to be made available online, as well as meetings being held in public. It is now up to us, the community, to engage in this opportunity of helping shape Gibraltar’s physical environment. Yesterdays’ meeting covered minor projects but we understand that larger projects will be on the table for discussion at the next two proposed February meetings. You can check for further information online at:-

    http://www.gibraltar.gov.gi/town-planning and by then clicking on the “DPC” link on the left hand side.

    ESG advise UK Students:

    • On another subject Gibraltar, this week, has seen a large group of students from Oxford Brookes University on a fact finding trip to collect information for their studies. The topic was sustainability in small nations and while Malta has previously been the model studied by this University, it is now encouraging students to visit Gibraltar as a challenging and interesting location to study in its own right. The ESG was asked to advise various groups on topics such as pollution and waste management and found the entire exchange very interesting, and the discussions of mutual benefit.

    On Clean Ups:

    • In our last newsletter we also invited volunteers to help the ESG and Heritage Trust continue a clean up at Witham’s Cemetery which we jointly started in 2011. It now appears that this area is already being taken care of by Govt Agencies and the Heritage Trust and so we shall instead confirm an alternative location to clear, possibly in the Jungle or a coastal clean up. Timing is likely to be end of January or early February and we shall confirm dates soon.


    • We continue to meet with Government ministries to discuss our concerns and interests in Gibraltar’s environment and are preparing for numerous presentations and talks coming up so it’s a busy start to 2012.

    Plse contact us at esg@gibtelecom.net, 200-48996, or 54960000 if you would like to join our group, sign up for future campaigns, or generally just to meet up and discuss any concerns.

    Thanks for listening



    Check out the following link on Gibraltar Maritime Authority website home page for an 80 page document explaining in detail what occurred on the fateful day a massive vessel smashed itself against Gibraltar cliffs.


    ESG 12/1/12 Radio

    • This is our first 2012 newsletter and we look ahead with guarded optimism that a new Government in office committed to open governance and action on long standing environmental issues will bear fruition.

    One key 2012 development concerning the ESG is our appointment to the DPC, that is, the Development and Planning Commission. For years we have been calling for greater transparency and access to information for the citizen with respect to planning applications and decisions behind those projects given the green light. Government projects to date have not required any form of screening or environmental impact assessments, but this is now also set to change. We hope to learn more about how the democratisation process of planning will be carried out over the next few weeks when the second meeting of the revised DPC is scheduled to be held.

    • For those who believe that the ESG would simply oppose all development let us please offer some reassurance that our role will be to promote good practice and use of best available technology and standards with respect to all projects especially when they risk impacting people and the living environment. Longer term we would be urging policy makers within Government to put in place a greening up programme for Gibraltar to ensure that we fall in line with other communities trying to play a responsible part in meeting the serious challenges of global warming and climate change. Gibraltar is not and will not escape the impact in future years from resource depletion, global energy crisis, climate instability and we believe we also have to inform, equip and prepare ourselves for an unpredictable future that our children and future generations will likely face. But the ESG are also realists and we know we cannot perform miracles overnight; we also know, however, that there is much that can be done to restore a healthier environmental balance in our community today without sacrificing the shorter term, but nevertheless critical “progress” which is so important to today’s’ families.

    • Moving on we have already begun a series of talks and presentations covering issues like last years Clean Up as well as familiarisation talks on local and regional environmental issues. The film, carrying the central message of the Clean Up Campaign which in 2011 was “Our Place, Our Planet, Our Responsibility”, will be screened at our local cinema soon and we shall be promoting dates and times shortly. You can also catch the film online by visiting ESG homepage and clicking on film link posted there. Our website: esg-gib.net.

    • We would like to refer briefly to the recent heavy pollution from both generating stations on Rosia Road which caused terrible pollution recently and on which we issued a press release. The situation, as we all know, is getting from bad to worse and after many years of lobbying we know that the only solution to this problem is the new replacement power station. We shall be meeting with the new Minister for the Environment on this issue in late January when we shall be pressing for a date to be announced for the completion of the new power station

    • Towards the end of 2011 the ESG held its AGM and a call was made for subscription renewal to all ESG members. Many have already sent in their subs but we would like to remind you to please send in yours if you haven’t yet done so. Thank you.

    Future clean ups on the horizon include revisiting Witham’s Cemetery where last year, together with the Gibraltar Heritage Trust and other volunteers we started clearing overgrown vegetation and rubbish material and plan to do so again soon. If you are listening and would like to get involved please do contact us at: 200-48966/or 200-42844, and leave your details. You can also reach us at 54960000 or on email: esg@gibtelecom.net
    Thanks for listening


    Under our new Coastal Survey programme, our monitor yesterday spotted another dead dolphin at Eastern Beach. This is the second such sighting since our survey began two months ago! The tragic sight raises alarm bells for the safety for marine life in our waters.

    Following on from regular surveys of Gibraltars “key flotsam collection points” which we are doing as part of a new exercise under the CUTW umbrella, the ESG was most concerned to find another dead dolphin washed ashore at Eastern Beach. This is the second dead dolphin found in as many months and raises serious concerns about the safety at sea for our marine life.
    We are hoping to collect useful information over a period of time to help create a picture of what waste material is affecting the marine environment :

    either because of litter travelling out from our streets through storm drains, or brought to shore via storms at sea.

    The survey also concluded that the calmer weather is resulting in much cleaner beaches on the whole which was positive.

    ESG to join DPC 5th January 2012

    ESG to form part of Gibraltar’s Development and
    Planning Commission (DPC)

    The ESG is very happy to form part of a more public and transparent Planning Commission where we shall be able to directly submit our concerns and recommendations for adherence to best environmental practice and standards in all applications laid before the DPC. This will help lead to a healthier and more sustainable local environment and therefore quality of life.

    The ESG has campaigned during the past decade for urgent improvements to our planning process and therefore welcomes this opportunity to contribute more substantially as part of the new DPC.

    Radio Newsletter 151211

    ESG Radio Newsletter Thursday 15th December 2011

    Hello, it’s good to be back with you after a very interesting and busy gap. We have seen a lot of
    activity in our community recently with the culmination of the hustings and a change of
    Government after-a very tightly fought election.

    During the campaign it was refreshing to hear people from all sides stepping forward and raising
    issues which matter deeply to the community, in an intelligent and informed manner. However, it
    has highlighted the glaring absence of such debate in between elections – these important issues
    have traditionally then fallen to NGO’s and Associations to prioritise and make public. Let’s hope
    however, that all those candidates who so passionately shared their aspirations and ideas with us –
    the public- will continue to do so for the betterment of our community. Maybe we need a Question
    Time Programme in Gibraltar where different issues are focused on every week or fortnight with an
    invited audience and informed panel?? !

    Or maybe this is what will happen in Parliament if we are to have the numerous sittings
    promised, and televised at that. What is clear is that the community should not be fed an obscene
    amount of information during a 7 day period before making such important decisions as electing a
    government into office for the next four years.

    The ESG submitted a detailed Wish List to all parties and this is our working document which we
    shall now take up with renewed energy with the new Minister for the Environment. With meetings
    starting soon, we hope to continue working hard to realise as many of our aims and objectives as
    possible. Look out for updates on our website esg-gib.net.

    Obviously Government has much to do on the environment. Sewage pollution is a serious matter
    and we now have three no-go areas in Gibraltar due to this problem -Western Beach, Mid Harbour
    area and of course, Europa Point.. With today’s data on the Env Agency Website showing Western
    Beach to be carrying dangerous levels of pollution once again, we strongly urge everyone to avoid
    entering the waters in that area for either for bathing or for water sport purposes. We shall also be
    pressing for Govt to close this beach. Mid Harbour area with the influx of residents into new
    estates, is suffering from dreadful levels of sewage pollution, this time from infrastructural
    problems of our own at Line Wall Road. It demands that urgent action is taken and we were pleased
    to hear this week that this problem should be repaired within two weeks. If only we could do the
    same for Western Beach,

      but that is another story

    For those of you interested and concerned about maritime safety it was very positive to note that the
    Maritime Agency is giving serious consideration to making piloting compulsory for vessels leaving
    as well as ·entering Gibraltar waters. This has been one of our aims for some years and so we
    welcome hearing that this will soon become a reality and increase maritime safety in our waters.
    The ESG will also be making representations to Govt over complaints we have received from local
    staff working at the border over the extreme levels of air pollution caused by slow or gridlocked
    traffic due to border controls and how this is affecting people’s wellbeing. A very serious matter to
    those affected and needs urgent attention. Perhaps some controls and notices to all drivers to switch
    off engines when not moving could help as well as other measures to be explored.

    Of course we couldn’t finish today without mentioning Christmas. This will be our last newsletter
    until 2012 and so I would like to convey warm wishes to one and all on behalf of the ESG, thank
    our members, sponsors and supporters for the work we have been able to achieve this past year and
    for stepping forward to support various yampaigns and actions. Let’s keep working together for a
    cleaner and healthier environment.