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  • ESG Radio Newsletter 30/06/16

    ESG Radio Newsletter 30th June 2016


    -In the run up to the referendum on Brexit we urged the community to support a Remain vote to continue to have the best chance at a better quality of life and a healthier living environment.


    -While there have been and continue to be environmental problems facing our community, both at local and regional level, the support, backbone and framework provided over the decades by the EU on environmental management and improvement has been of utmost value to our group and critical to our many fights at every level. People have been talking to us about what now on the Refinery, for example?


    -Indeed this has been a major campaign for us since 2002 and one that we have only been able to fight at European level. The Leave vote, for now at least, threatens our ability to do this but let me say that we are determined to continue to fight such Bay pollution and will be exploring what options these may be. We have already begun discussions with our cross border colleagues on the implications from this vote on our existing work and campaign.


    -While the environment did not feature in the referendum in great detail, only referred to broadly as environmental protection, the EU legislates in all aspects of our lives to ensure we reduce negative environmental impacts and increases sustainability. In our case, as a grassroots Env NGO we campaign for clean air and water, renewable energy, on pollution, traffic, shipping and other industry, waste and more. All linked to EU management, research, legislation and enforcement.


    -These are fundamental to a decent, safe and modern society that looks after its people, biodiversity and the living environment and it is heartening to see our Government and Opposition united to take strident steps in efforts to retain the link to the EU which has served us so well on so many different levels. Good luck and the support of the community is clearly with you!


    -In the midst of so many upsets, uncertainties and political upheavals, we, as an environmental NGO, have to remain focused on our area of concern and interest. We also need to think about potential scenarios where we may not be able to slip easily into maintaining our EU links.


    -In this case we have always advocated for EU standards and above to be applied in Gibraltar regarding environmental impacts, given the size of our small nation, and thus the direct impact of any polluting activity.


    –Our team will continue to highlight the need for Gibraltar’s own Environmental plans and laws to be of the highest possible standards and rigorously applied and will also continue to promote ideal solutions as we have done for over fifteen years.


    Todays newsletter has focused on this issue because of the magnitude of the impact of the leave result on all our lives and especially from an environmental point of view. Do please email us at esg@gibtelecom.net or visit our website esg-gib.net if you would like to know more about the issues we follow.


    Thanks for listening.








    ESG on Airport Bird Strike Issue 9th June 2016

    Press Release

    Re Airport Bird Strike

    9th June 2016


    The ESG considers that we are facing an increasingly dangerous situation regarding plane activity and gull numbers, given the recent aborting of a plane due to a bird strike incident.


    Gulls are frequently seen flying across the runway while planes are taking off and landing, and this, combined with a growing number of flights from our airport, is potentially increasing the odds of a serious accident.


    Unfortunately their numbers are such that yellow-legged gulls are considered a pest and there is a dangerous overpopulation of them due to the abundant human waste available as food.


    Due to the sheer impossibility of removing feeding grounds in Los Barrios, which accounts for their high population numbers, it remains incumbent on us to significantly reduce the numbers of breeding gulls that come to Gibraltar.


    The effective reduction in numbers of these birds would increase aircraft safety, benefit migratory birds and reduce the spread of infections from their droppings – recent evidence suggests that they are helping to spread antibiotic resistant bacteria.


    Government is no doubt following a culling programme it believes sufficient in dealing with this problem; however, the dangers exposed by the recent aborted flight due to a bird strike is a stark reminder that much more needs to be done to control their numbers more effectively and avert a potential tragedy in the future.


    ESG Radio Newsletter 9th June 2016

    ESG Radio Newsletter 9th June 2016

    Hi there! Recent developments have prompted great interest in our environment once again. It was positive, for example, to have the launch of the Eco Wave Pilot project take place, a measure we hope can and will be replicated at appropriate locations throughout Gibraltar. It will be interesting to learn how well this technology works for our local conditions. We know marine turbines, that is, underwater turbine technology, could also be highly beneficial to us in Gibraltar given the power of the currents meeting off Europa Point making this particular technology most suitable. We have heard plans for wider application of solar technology and hope these can soon be activated.

    Renewable energy is fast becoming the A word as we consider the impact already occurring from the burning of fossil fuels throughout the world in terms of global warming and climate extremes.

    Something that I saw recently online and would like to share with you is a TED talk given by Al Gore in February this year called: The case for optimism on climate change. He spends the first half of his talk outlining the problems, the issues, in his own inimitable style, full of authoritative data, impressive graphs, footage etc., basically painting a frightening and very convincing picture of the growing consequences of a warming world, highlighting the practices that need to change. The second half is very positive – this is where the optimism comes in, with Mr Gore commending the efforts that countries and commerce have made in response to the environmental problems highlighted ten years back, citing that response has so far surpassed all expectations, and, that while it still may not be as fast enough, is certainly moving in the right direction. It’s a compelling and memorable talk – simply Google “Al Gore” and “The case for optimism on climate change” and the right link should come up. Lots of material there for good discussion too.

    This week has seen a visit to Gibraltar of an economic contingent from the Faroe Islands, announced in the media as looking at ways of working together. We have issued a press release highlighting the annual whale and dolphin slaughter carried out by the Faroe Islanders, an action that continues to provoke outrage around the world as well as a plethora of well-supported petitions. We urge them to look at our own Nature Protection laws and hope that they will finally take measures to stop this annual massacre that is out-dated and a threat to endangered wildlife.

    Another issue rearing its head is that of seagulls. Once again, public interest has been such that we are releasing a press release on this today also. The aborted flight a few days ago should ring alarm bells that more needs to be done to drastically reduce number of gulls in Gibraltar. This time the plane had time to take corrective steps and safeguard its passengers. We urge Government to review this matter with some urgency.

    Last week we supported the World Environment Day street stall event held in the Piazza for most of the day. A steady trickle of people came through the stalls and many a good discussion was had about various local environmental matters.

    Quick update re DPC, date has been changed to 28th June.

    Another buzzword at present is the EU Referendum. The ESG has been fighting to improve environmental issues at a local and cross border level for the past 15 years and we know full well how crucial EU environmental legislation has been for our work. We therefore urge everyone to vote to stay within the EU to safeguard the environment and protect our quality of life. May not be perfect but the EU guarantees minimum standards and that is critical when it comes to the environment!


    Visit our page at esg-gib.net for more info. Contact us at esg@gibtelecom.net.





    ESG Press Release re Faroe Island Visit 8th June 2016

    ESG call for sharing of Gibraltar Nature Conservation Laws with the Faroe Islands

    8th June 2016

    The recent visit of the Faroe Islands Financial Delegation should not be logged in the local press as simply that of reaching out and sharing ideas between two small nations.

    Many know, and are concerned by the annual slaughter of dolphins and whales undertaken by the Faroe Islanders. A historic practice which continues today and has outlasted the passage of time, of new rules and understanding of threatened wildlife, and of the need for global conservation practices.

    Whales and Dolphins are already struggling to fight extinction in many parts of the world, from pollution, loss of habitat, overfishing and climate change.

    This annual practice of the taking out of entire pods cannot help sustain these species and has seen numerous petitions and campaigns over the years.

    We urge our Government to share our own Nature Protection and Conservation laws with the Faroe Islands administration as one positive way of future collaboration between the two small nations in a bid to express concern and firm opposition to this cruel and unsustainable practice.