761,000 tonnes less of carbon dioxide in the air after closure of Marsa power station
A year after Enemalta turned off the Marsa power station and left it on cold standby at the beginning of 2015, the CO2 emissions in the area have been reduced by around 761,000 tonnes yearly,which is the average of the levels registered between 2010 – 2014.
In a statement, Enemalta said that to reach a similar decrease in the level of these emissions which are responsible for climate change, one would need to install solar panels the size of 900 football grounds.
Enemalta added that today the residents and those who work in this area, are enjoying an improvement in their air quality. It said that the air quality monitoring studies which were carried out in January show that emissions of sulphur dioxide (SO2) in the same area were reduced by 80% when compared with the years when the power station was still working. It said that the levels of SO2 at the former power station were almost as low as those observed by the Global Air Watch monitoring station at the University of Malta at the Tal-Giordan Lighthouse, in Għarb, Gozo. Further improvement was registered in the emissions of NO2 although this type of pollution is also caused by other factors, including cars.
Enemalta also explained that the residents in the area no longer complain about the black dust which used to cover their properties in Marsa, Paola, Fgura, Hamrun, Tarxien and other neighbouring villages. It said that the last reports of black dust received by Enemalta go back to 2013. In March 2011, a report by Prof. Alfred J. Vella had confirmed that “as soon as the Marsa Power Station is closed down, the black dust will be reduced considerably”.
Enemalta’s Chief Executive Frederick Azzopardi explained that plans for the next phase in the dismantling of the power station will gain momentum soon. This phase includes the removal of parts of Boiler 8, one of the highest structures at the station, as well as other equipment.
Enemalta confirmed these positive environmental developments during a recent meeting with mayors of the towns and villages located near the power station. Mr Fredrick Azzopardi and a number of other officials met with the mayors to give them details about the dismantling of the power station which will continue shortly.