Cleaning programme of valleys and water catchments continues
The Ministry for Gozo is continuing its program of cleaning of valleys and water dams around Gozo that started in summer 2010. This program is being implemented as proposed in the eco-Gozo action plan 2010-2012. Last year, 4 water catchment areas in two valleys – Wied ta' Żejta and Marsalforn Valley were cleaned.
The Minister for Gozo, the Hon. Giovanna Debono and the Parliamentary Assistant within the Minsitry for Gozo, the Hon. Frederick Azzopardi visited the Ramla Valley where works are proceeding well. In the first days of work, around 360 trucks of material were removed so that this main valley, which includes 3 water catchment areas, will have the possibility to store more rain water.
Minister Giovanna Debono said that the cleaning and maintenance program of water catchment areas is an extensive project which is contributing in meeting high standards of sustainable development in Gozo. Through this project, the facilities to store rain water during the winter months will be increased and thus less water will be lost at sea. The Minister for Gozo stated that such cleaning is also beneficial to the agricultural sector and thus farmers will exert less pressure on the water-table. "Water is a main resource for the government's initiative to turn this island into an ecological island and is instrumental to meet the objectives for a sustainable future", stated the Minister for Gozo.
In the last days work has also resumed in another part of Marsalforn Valley, found between Victoria and Marsalforn bay. Around 160 trucks of soil and other material has been collected up till now. Material that is being collected from these valleys are being transported to Qortin ta' Isopu, limits of Nadur, where this site, once a quarry, will be transformed into an ecological restoration project and in the planting of trees.
This valley cleaning program is spread over three years and for this year's program includes also the cleaning of other valleys in Gozo, those of Wied tal-Għasri and Wied tal-Kapuċċini.
All precautions are being taken so that during works, no damage is caused to the environment. Works are being coordinated by the Ministry for Gozo under the supervision of the Department for Environment Protection within the Malta Environment and Planning Authority. This project has the potential to help in the increase of water storage in natural environment, thus increasing the potential of volume water to be seeped through the rocks in order to improve the quality of water table.
In the meantime, other projects related to the conservation of water are being implemented in Gozo. These include the building of 8 water reservoirs by Non Governmental Organisations and Local Councils through 2 schemes issued by the Ministry for Gozo earlier this year; the restoration of reservoirs in government property and building of new reservoirs in a number of projects in Gozo.
Earlier this month, the Ministry for Gozo has also launched a substantial investment of more than half a million euro from the Coca-Cola Foundation in water conservation and education projects in Gozo.
15. 09. 2011