National Transport Strategies in Development

The National Transport Strategy and Transport Master Plan (2013)

Transport Malta had been requested by Government to draft a National Transport Strategy (NTS) and Transport Master Plan (TMP).  The NTS sets the policy and framework for transport in the Maltese Islands and will develop a vision and pathway for transport to/from and within Malta up to 2050. A Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) was undertaken as part of the development of the Transport Master Plan.

The Transport Master Plan considered all transport sectors including land transport, ports and ferries, public transport and air transport; for areas of particular intervention, and includes requirements for specific measures, as well as further detailed sector action plans.   The Transport Master Plan has prioritised the extensive list of transport infrastructure projects and policy measures to be implemented by 2025.  The work being carried out in this respect can be found here

Malta - Gozo Fixed Link (2011)

Following Cabinet approval, Transport Malta has been instructed by the Ministry for Transport and Infrastructure (formerly as the Ministry for Infrastructure, Transport and Communications) to commission detailed feasibility studies on a road-tunnel link between Malta and Gozo. This follows expert findings that in principle, and on the basis of a preliminary and high level review, a road link is technologically doable and may be economically feasible.

In July 2011, through the EU JASPERS program of technical assistance to Malta, Transport Malta obtained the services of Mott MacDonald to carry out a preliminary analysis of road tunnel link options between Malta and Gozo.

The study presents a high level analysis of different tunnel options based on existing data, studies, information, site visits and various discussions with stakeholders.

For further information on the preliminary analysis conducted, please click here.

Reducing Pollution and Carbon Impact from Transport (2011)

Transport Malta is currently participating in a number of EU funded projects that will allow it to establish baselines and draft policies to reduce the carbon footprint of transport.

  • Port PVEV (ports & maritime transport) - making ports more energy efficient through generation of renewable energy and the use of electric mobility in port areas.
  • D-Air (airport & aviation transport) - creating a baseline carbon footprint study for the commercial airport operations, it will be possible to identify methods of reducing the impact of both travel to/from the airport as well as within the airport boundary.
  • STREETS (land transport) - by further enhancing Transport Malta’s ability to collect, store and analyse transport related geographical based data, further Integrated Strategies for Sustainable Transport in Malta will become possible.

Structure Plan (1990)

Previously, the national transport strategy was governed by the Structure Plan for the Maltese Islands.

The Structure Plan incorporated the plans made in 1990 for the following twenty years. In defining the various geographical parts of Malta and the transportation needs between, the Structure Plan defined certain critical transport infrastructure such as roads, ports and airports, and provided land use planning for their environs.

Supported by the Local Plans (2006), the Structure Plan defines areas available for transport infrastructure and also structured the definition of the road transport network into Arterial, Distributor and Local roads based on function.

The Structure Plan (1990) is currently being updated as the “Structure Plan for Environment and Development”.

D-Air Project

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D-Air: Decarbonated Airport Regions

January 2012 to December 2014

Aim of Project

The aim of this project is to contribute towards the achievement if carbon neutral airport operations. This will be done by improving the surface accessibility to and from the airport; contribute towards CO2 neutrality of airport operations. The project also pays special attention to the optimal involvement of business R&D communities in creating well connected green airports.

D-Air studies how to reduce carbon emissions from:

  • surface access transport  to and from the airport
  • airport operations

How?

  • Study visits and workshops: where each Airport Partner demonstrates measures that have been implemented to minimise carbon emissions to the experts within the Partnership;

  • Stakeholder forums: whereby Partner Entities gather feedback, ideas and suggestions for possible measures to be implemented in the future;

  • Exchange of experiences between the 14 Partners;

  • Adapt solutions that have been successful at other airports.

Partnership

This project is a study on how to make airports greener in a bid to make airport operations carbon neutral. The project, which is 85% co-funded by the INTERREG IVC funding programme, is led by Eidenhoven City Council. The consortium of 14 partners includes the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Germany, Austria, Italy & Malta.

Benefits from the Project

Airports in Europe find it hard to expand because their environmental footprint is being continuously scrutinized by numerous authorities and neighbouring residents. However, if there is willingness to reduce the carbon around the airport, the neighbouring communities will begin to accept the airport as a necessary catalyst for economic development.

The D-Air project is striving to do just that.  Whereas other studies have tended to be academic, this project takes a hands-on approach and looks into measures that have been adopted in airports around Europe, assesses their success and leaves it up to its partner entities to adapt those measures to the needs and specificities within their regions. 

Transport Malta as Partner to D-Air

As part of this project Transport Malta aims to compile a Carbon Footprint study which will take into consideration all land based carbon sources, including land transportation, as well as aviation activity within the airport (up until an aircraft is airborne). This data is required in view of Malta’s participation in the EU 2020 Climate Change targets. Baseline data that this report will establish, will allow Malta to map, gauge and monitor plans and measures that needs to be put in place to achieve these targets. TM will also be able to propose plans to further reduce the carbon footprint of the airport.  This will be an important contributor to the efforts to reduce emissions by the transport sector, which is particularly hard to regulate in this matter.

For further information on the project, please click here

The Airport Regions Conference (ARC) Newsletters are available here. For the latest edition, Issue 41, please click here

 D-Air Final Event

This will be the D-AIR project’s final event, a one day conference in Brussels, discussing the implications of the three year work of more than 10 partners from Europe on decarbonising airport regions. For the conference programme and more information, please click here

Video contest launched at the ETC Annual Event

INTERACT and the European Commission are launching the video contest ’border issues, border solutions’ among European general public and European projects and programmes (Interreg, Instrument for Pre-Accession (IPA) and European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI CBC)), and individual film-makers to share their videos highlighting the results and benefits of cooperation in Europe. D-Air launched a video that explains how the project, which looks at decarbonising the air around airports has been capable of connecting people from 14 regions and airports in Europe into a network of highly active environment-savvy professionals. The video can be viewed and voted for from here

Note about INTERREG IVC

The Interregional Cooperation Programme INTERREG IVC, financed by the European Union’s Regional Development Fund, helps Regions of Europe work together to share experience and good practice in the areas of innovation, the knowledge economy, the environment and risk prevention. EUR 302 million is available for project funding but, more than that, a wealth of knowledge and potential solutions are also on hand for regional policy-makers.

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Malta Study Visit

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D-Air Project – Malta Study Visit 20th & 21st February 2013

The third study visit of the project took place in Malta on the 20th and 21st February 2013, at the Intercontinental Hotel Malta, in St. Julian’s. Experts from nine regions in the D-Air partnership were gathered, as well as a number of stakeholders, Transport Malta (which was the organiser), Arriva Ltd. (the national public transport provider), the University of Malta and Malta International Airport (MIA).

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The partners looked and discussed the challenges that the island is facing in terms of transport to and from the airport as well as ground operations, one of the major issues being the reliance on personal car transportation. Malta has one of the highest rates of car ownership in Europe. Some suggestions and ideas were identified in terms of diminishing the road dependency in Malta, such as levying public parking spots, having different policies in terms of building new parking spots and developing further the new public transport system already in place.

Other policies which have already been undertaken, as explained by Transport Malta and Arriva representatives during the meeting, include an increase in bus schedules and new bus lanes. These aim to enhance modal shift from cars to buses and thus make people trust the system more.

A presentation from MIA was also delivered which gave an overview of the future master plan of the airport. Also discussed was the number of parking spots already available in the airport and future plans of building even more. With regards to green construction, Malta now has its first BREEAM certified green office space completed, on the premises of the airport, known as Skyparks.

Other ideas which the partners shared were carpooling and car sharing and an innovative new idea of taxi sharing. The Green Travel Plan (GTP) initiative was presented by the University of Malta.

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The energy sector in Malta was also another topic discussed and presented, together with an overview of Malta’s electricity consumption, energy efficiency, future plans to reduce reliance on imported fuels (such as PV installations, offshore and onshore wind energy, solar water heaters, waste to energy systems and the use of biofuels) and reduction in GHG emissions.

Another highlight of the meeting was Electromobility in Malta and Climate Change. Information given included the nation’s proposed targets by 2020 and proposed legislation, information on new technologies already available such as Full Electric Vehicles (FEVs), hybrid and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles and a list of projects already undergoing in Malta and Transport Malta’s involvement in each.

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To conclude the meeting, the delegates were invited to attend a visit to the Malta International Airport.

To view further information on this project, please click here

To view the official website of the D-Air project, please click here and the latest newsletter is available here

The meeting agenda and presentations delivered during the meeting are available below:

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D-Air - 1st Stakeholders’ Forum 4th June 2013

IMG_6732.JPG_201306141516402Transport Malta is participating in D-Air, an EU-funded Interreg IVC project, which aims to improve the surface accessibility to airport zones and the CO2 neutrality of airport operator activities. 

The project pays special attention to the optimal involvement of business R&D communities in creating well-connected green airports.  To this effect an emphasis has been made to select the right stakeholders to participate in this project along with transport Malta; to contribute to the discussion, raise concerns and suggest possible measures that can be implemented to encourage energy efficiency within the airport region for the benefit of all.  

In view of the wide-ranging causes and effects of CO2, the Study Area encompasses the airport and its operations, such as ground handling operations, transport of employees to and from the airport etc. (aviation-related activities fall outside the scope of this project); this creates a wider area of influence within which it is envisaged that the cumulative reduction in CO2-generating activities will have an overall benefit for all concerned parties. 

Taking the above into view, Transport Malta organised its first Stakeholders’ Forum on 4th June 2013 at the Malta International Airport. The purpose of this meeting was to provide stakeholders with detailed information relating to the D-Air Project and to open up a general discussion on CO2 emissions, its causes and effects. The main issues discussed during the forum were the aims and expected results of the project, the status of the project and work completed so far and the next steps.

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The forum also incorporated a Question & Answer session.

The main issues discussed included:

  • The movement of employees to and from the airport;

  • Possible solutions to reduce traffic jams in the road network;

  • Reducing the use of private cars among employees of the airport by encouraging car sharing or introducing a shuttle bus service from a specific region of the country to the airport – and thus reducing a number of cars from the road network;

  • The relationship between water and electricity bills and the airport;

  • The use of PV panels;

To conclude the meeting, participants were thanked for their participation and the interest shown in the project. Throughout the life-span of the project, stakeholders will be updated regularly on the progress made locally.

For more information on the project, please click here

To view the official website of the project, please click here

The presentation and report of the meeting can be found below:

D-Air 2nd Stakeholders’ Forum

14th May 2014, The Waterfront Hotel, Gzira

Following the 1st Stakeholders’ Forum held in June 2013, Transport Malta gathered the local D-Air stakeholders a second time on 14th May 2014.

The purpose of this meeting was to provide an update on the progress made in the D-Air project; present the carbon footprint data collected and conclusions compiled; present an initial list of measures that can be implemented by the operators within the airport region to decarbonise Malta’s airport ground operations.

The carbon footprint data and conclusions presented during this meeting were compiled and presented by Cyan Engineering and E-Cubed Consultants who, following official procurement procedures, were selected by Transport Malta to conduct this study which will lead to the presentation of an Implementation Plan incorporating the feedback gathered from one-to-one meetings held with stakeholders and comments given during the 14th May panel discussion.

Stakeholders were also invited to provide written feedback on the measures recommended following the meeting. While feedback will always be welcome, for the purposes of compiling the Implementation Plan, written feedback will be received by 21st May on the following e-mail addresses:

Presentations held by E-Cubed Consultants and Cyan Engineering during the 14th May Forum can be found below:

*Data presented in these presentations should not be considered as final and will be updated in due course.

Current Practices

Examples of practices that are already being implemented in various airports and cities taking part in the D-Air Project were also identified and shown to the Forum participants. This information and experience was gathered from the various Study Visits which Transport Malta officials participated in during the lifetime of the D-Air project.   Furthermore, one can read about what other airports around Europe are doing to minimise their carbon emissions by viewing the D-Air Study Visit Reports. Current best practices in Malta have already been presented.

Participants were thanked for their participation and for their continued interest shown in the project.

To view the official website of the project, please click here

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D-Air 3rd Stakeholders’ Forum

16th July 2014, Transport Malta, Sa Maison, Floriana

Following the 2nd Stakeholders Forum held on 14th May 2014, Transport Malta invited the D-Air stakeholders for the third time on 16th July 2014.

The purpose of the meeting was to present the Implementation Plan compiled by Cyan Engineering and E-Cubed Consultants, invite contributions and feedback from the stakeholders gathered and discuss the way forward to be taken after D-Air project comes to an end in December 2014.

The meeting kicked-off with an overview of the results gathered during the compilation of the carbon footprint for the airport boundary. From there, E-Cubed and Cyan Engineering presented in detail each of the measures that make up the proposed Implementation Plan, including a brief cost-benefit analysis on each measure.

Recommendations suggested include changes in behaviour, electricity efficiency measures, transport measures, renewable energy measures, water measures and aircraft related measures. The presentation included an overview of EU Funding Opportunities for 2014-2020 which can be used by the stakeholders to facilitate the implementation of any of the measures proposed.

This was elaborated upon by Mr Peter Paul Barbara from Transport Malta who gave examples of how such funds can be tapped. An overview of pipeline projects which Transport Malta will be participating in, and for which EU funds shall be sought, was also given.

Green Urban Mobility Plans featured in a presentation given by Mr Raphael Mizzi from the University of Malta who elaborated on how car pooling, the use of bus transport and cycling have been encouraged within the university campus and how these measures can be taken up by other companies.

The meeting concluded with a round table discussion with participants who gave their comments and feedback and a discussion was held on the way forward.

Participants were thanked for their participation and for their continued interest shown in the D-Air project.

Presentations delivered during the meeting can be found below:

Next Steps

Publication of the Implementation Plan

Publication of the finalised Implementation Plan is expected to be done in September 2014. The final document will include the feedback gathered during the stakeholder forum meetings, comments sent by mail and feedback received during the one-to-one meetings held with several of the stakeholders as part of the preliminary data gathering exercise.

Final Event

A one-day conference will be held in Brussels on 13th October in which participants will be discussing the implications of the three-year work of more than 10 partners from around Europe on decarbonising airport regions. The D-Air project results will be presented at this conference. The event will address, amongst other things, the issues of surface access to and from the airport, the reduction of the carbon emissions of the airport itself as well as innovation means.

The Event is open for all. Further information and registration is available here

For the official website of the project, please click here

Malta - Gozo Fixed Link

Assessment of Road Tunnel Options between Malta and Gozo - A Preliminary Analysis
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In July 2011, through the EU JASPERS program of technical assistance to Malta,Transport Malta obtained the services of Mott MacDonald to carry out a preliminary analysis of road tunnel link options between Malta and Gozo.

The purpose of the five month study was to provide a list of technical, engineering, environmental and economic issues relating to potential sub-sea tunnel fixed-link options connecting Malta and Gozo. The study presents a high level analysis of different tunnel options based on existing data, studies, information, site visits and various discussions with stakeholders.

The final report:

  • Presents a background review and a list of key issues identified during consultation with the various stakeholders;
  • Provides a broad economic assessment of introducing a fixed link between Malta and Gozo;
  • Identifies four potential tunnel alignments for further investigation;
  • Presents a high level environmental assessment of each of the four tunnel route alignments.

The number of vehicles crossing between Malta and Gozo has increased at 4.1% per annum between 2000 and 2010. In 2010, there were an average of 1,500 vehicles per day /direction and 5,500 people per day/ direction travelling between Malta and Gozo.

The introduction of a fixed link would reduce average journey times between Gozo and Malta by at least 40 minutes. Four potential tunnels alignments have been assessed at a preliminary, conceptual level ranging in length between 6 and 10 kilometres depending on their depth and structural design. The four tunnel alignment options take into account the engineering and environmental constraints that consultants were able to identify using existing data and information.

A detailed geological and geotechnical investigation is still required to determine more precisely the tunnel alignment, tunnel form, cost and construction methodology. The location, geology and characteristics of the project (contractual, economic, market conditions, regulatory requirements, working practices and local environmental conditions) can have a significant effect on the cost of the tunnel. In this respect, the consultants have estimated costs for the construction of the four different tunnel option alignments based on a case history review of different tunnel types around the world.

Based on the reviewed case studies, the range of costs (in 2010 prices) estimated for the construction of the fixed link is wide and would depend on ground conditions and other circumstances. The consultants have estimated a range of costs for each tunnel alignment option between €156m for a single-bore 3-lane bi-directional tunnel right up to €1080m for a twin-bore 2-lane uni-directional tunnel. The cost estimate for each option would need detailed verification following details studies of the short-listed options and would be subject to detailed reviews of economic and environmental considerations.

The Consultants found that:

  1. With regard to the overall length, depth, configuration and size of tunnels an undersea tunnel link between Malta and Gozo would be technically feasible and does not exceed the capability of modern technology;
  2. The geology of the area is potentially complex and not well documented. A detailed geological and geotechnical investigation is required to determine the optimum tunnel alignment, construction methodology and more detailed estimates of construction costs;
  3. The typical construction stage for a tunnel of this nature would be approximately 5 to 7 years, but this average duration is strongly dependant on the geological environment;
  4. A road tunnel link between Malta and Gozo could potentially be co-financed by the European Union under the Cohesion Fund;
  5. The securing of external financing for the construction of a fixed link between Malta and Gozo would require a full feasibility study. Consultants advise that no external funding would be considered without a comparative assessment of other options to verify what is the most economically and environmentally advantageous way to link the islands. The full feasibility study and environmental impact assessments would also be required to assess the following different Malta-Gozo transport options:
  1. Bridge and/or viaduct;
  2. Bored and/or immersed tube tunnel;
  3. Combinations (e.g. bridge and tunnel);
  4. Other fixed links (e.g. combined/tidal barrage; railway; etc.);
  5. Retention of existing ferry service and/or its service expansion;
  6. Other transport services (air, sea);
  7. Other measures (demand management, travel behavior change and similar).

A full feasibility shall require among other things detailed geological and geo-technical investigations including full geological mapping, geophysical investigations and core drilling, detailed designs, environment impact and risk assessments.

A presentation is available here (pdf, 2012, 691kb)

The report by Mott MacDonald is available here (pdf, 2012, 13.1Mb)

PORT - PVEV Project

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Demonstrating how to make ports more energy efficient as well as demonstrating the use of electric mobility in ports and port areas (PORT-PVEV)

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The PORT-PVEV project brought together Transport Malta, the Malta Ministry for Transport and Infrastructure, the Port Authority of Catania and the Province of Caltanissetta who implemented the project between 2012 and 2015 with the assistance of an 85% co-financing rate supplied through the OP Italy-Malta 2007-2013.

Project Objectives

The main objective of PORT-PVEV was to demonstrate how ports and port areas, and the operations therein, can reduce their carbon emissions with the final aim of contributing towards the decoupling of the dependence of economic growth from non-renewable sources of energy.

Specific Interventions

A twelve-month demonstration period took place as part of this project, during which the Partners demonstrated, tested and evaluated:

  • The deployment of electric vehicles (EVs) in Catania, Gela and Valletta harbour areas to partly substitute conventional vehicles used to service port operations and test the feasibility of said vehicles as a substitute of combustion engine vehicles.
    • Transport Malta (TM) deployed 13 full electric vehicles (EVs) including 2 light goods vans, 4 crew vans, 3 passenger cars and 4 quadricycles.  The EVs were introduced as part of TM’s general fleet and were used in day-to-day duties as part of the Authority’s operations.
       
    • The Province of Caltanissetta deployed five full electric vehicles in Gela for use of by the Municipality.  The vehicles vary between panel vans and passenger vehicles.   The Port Authority of Catania, on the other hand, deployed one vehicle for use by the port authority. 
       
  • Production of solar energy to partly power port administration buildings and study the extent to which renewable energy produced on site can contribute towards the building’s carbon footprint reduction.
    • To test this, a Photovoltaic Plant was installed on the roof of the Malta Transport Centre building covering a surface area of 1,290 sq/m, producing 189,000 kWh/annum.  The plant offsets 10% of the building’s energy consumption.
       
    • Throughout the pilot the vehicles deployed in Malta travelled approximately 85,000 km.  To support this mileage, 97,000 kWh of electricity were needed.  This represents 51% of the solar power produced by the on-site plant; meaning that if another 11 full electric vehicles are deployed as part of the TM fleet, the electricity required by the full 24-vehicle fleet would be completely supported by the solar power produced on site.  Put in other words, the PV plant, on an annual basis, offers the potential for carbon neutral transport on 24 full electric vehicles.
  • Charging infrastructure was installed at all partner port areas to support the electric vehicles deployed including the first 3-point fast charging pillar at the Malta Transport Centre which charges 80% of an EV battery in less than 30 mins.
     
  • Installation and operation of solar car charging stations in public car parks in Maltese port areas to test and demonstrate the extent to which direct sun-to-car power can be produced; and therefore the provision of carbon neutral transport for the general public.
    • This was tested through the installation of 3 solar car charging stations in Malta; particularly, at Ċirkewwa Ferry Terminal, Ta’Xbiex Marina and Deep Water Quay Car Park in Marsa.
       
    • Each steel structure constitutes of a PV array installed on top of the station, producing 17,000 kWh per annum and which is stored in a 24 kWh Lithium-ion battery also found on site.   Two double-point charging pillars are found at each site; one connected directly to the grid, while the other connected to both the grid and the on-site battery.  If while an EV is charging the power in the on-site battery is depleted, the system shifts automatically to the grid, and electricity continues to be extracted from the grid seamlessly.  Through the pilot it was concluded that each point can produce up to 1.5 charging events per day using solar power, resulting in over 3000 charging events per year using solely solar power.
       
  • Off grid electric bike charging stations have also been installed in Catania.  Power for the e-bike charging is extracted directly from the PV array at each site.  The three sites are also used to provide housing for 20 e-bikes introduced in the port area and made available to the public for improved accessibility within and around the city.  Each station has been installed close to a public transport hub in order to also encourage intermodality of transport modes.
    • Five e-bikes have also been deployed in Gela, for added accessibility to residents and tourists in the port area.
       
  • The project did not stop at road transport, however. It also studied the feasibility of Cold Ironing, a system by which grid-connected infrastructure is used to power berthed vessels using electricity from the national grid instead of the on-board high polluting heavy fuel oil. This would not only improve air quality within the port areas but also vastly reduce noise generated by ship engines.
    • A full feasibility study has been compiled through the project studying the feasibility of installing the infrastructure at the Valletta Grand Harbour. 
       
  • Local green plans for ports and port areas have been compiled for Catania and Gela to suggest future policies for the implementation of green energy actions to further decarbonise port areas in each of the partner ports as a second stage to this project. The suggested actions will serve as a continuation to the results achieved in this project.

Results

Emissions Savings

Over 200 tonnes of CO2 emissions have been saved as a result of the interventions by the PORT-PVEV in the partner port areas.

Intervension  CO2 tonnes saved per annum
Malta Transport Centre PV Plant  165
13-vehicle fleet deployed in Malta 20.99
3 Solar Car Charging Stations 95
Electric vehicles deployed in Gela 17

Carbon dioxide is not the only emissions produced by road transport; Nitrogen Oxides and Particulate Matter are other harmful pollutants resulting from road transport.  In this regard, based on the 13 full electric vehicles deployed by Transport Malta, the following emissions have been saved:

Pollutant Tonnes saved per annum
Particulate Matter 4
Nitrogen Oxides 51

Production of Renawable Energy

Through interventions done as part of the project, an annual average total of 260,735kWh is being generated through renewable energy produced by Photovoltaic Installations deployed in Malta and Sicily.

Electric Vehicles Data

Costs per km
Electric Vehicles Petrol Vehicles Diesel Vehicles
Electricity consumption per km: 0.25 kWh/km Petrol consumption: 7 litres / 100km  Diesel consumption: 5.1 litres / 100 km
Cost per km: € 0.04 Cost per km: € 0.09 Cost per km: € 0.07
Annual Cost of Operation
Electric Vehicles Petrol Vehicles
Annual average fuel cost: € 263.08 Annual average fuel cost: € 591.93
Annual average maintenance cost: € 69.15 Annual average maintenance cost: € 1,009.03
Annual average licence fees: € 10.00 Annual average licence fees: € 217.03
Total: € 342.23 Total: € 1,817.09
Savings: € 1,474.86/ annum

Battery Autonomy

Based on the readings taken from the electric vehicles deployed in Malta with a battery power of 20kWh, the average range in kilometres given per full charge amounts to:

Summer Winter
111km 131km

For more details regarding the project and a better explanation of the results achieved, the PORT-PVEV Final Report is available here

The official page of the project can be found here

Port-PVEV Partners

 

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STREETS Project

Integrated Strategy for Sustainable Transport


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Operational Programme Italy-Malta 2007-2013

Aim of Project

This project contributes towards the strengthening of efficiency, sustainability and integration within a joint transport system aiming at an improved internal/external accessibility and competitiveness. The main result provides a contribution to overcoming the current bottlenecks identified within/between Malta and Sicily in strong connection to inadequate land and air infrastructures, logistics and commercial services. This project thus provides the basis for better accessibility through an eco-friendly transport system. The project frames the supply chain needs in order to maximise the system’s inherent ability to absorb an increased Sicilian-Maltese commutership of passengers and goods through a reorganisation of the entire network.

This project is part financed by the European Union – European Regional Development Fund with a total budgetary allocation of €2,500,000; 85% of which are funded by the Italy-Malta Cross-border Cooperation Programme 2007-2013.

The Region of Sicily will be leading the project, together with the contribution of ARCES Collegio Universitario (Research Centre) and Transport Malta (TM).

The role of Transport Malta

The role of Transport Malta in this project is to use the platform to be created by this project as an integrator, bringing together every aspect of the Authority’s operations by providing interoperable technology, geographic data standards, deployed data storages and technologies. The overall activities shall focus on the development of an efficient and integrated transport information system to make it available to the public, staff and all the stakeholders.

Specific deliverables shall concentrate on building up spatial data related to the multimodal transport network to provide efficient connections between the ports, land and air transport models and superimposing the data on a topographic map and other remote sensed imagery data. The transport network shall consist of proper links and nodes to provide an essential reference dataset for each transport application. In addition to this network, the system would look at identifying and integrating in its geo-database design, sector specific datasets.  A web based GIS will be developed and integrated with other specific transport applications as identified in a needs assessment exercise. The enterprise-level GIS would support planning and daily operational and business needs for managing and maintaining a state of the art transportation network and services. This intranet portal would provide accurate and reliable geospatial information and services to various sectors within the Authority such as surface, aviation and maritime.  

Benefits from the project

Transport Malta is embarking on implementing an enterprise Geographic Information System across all the Authority to consolidate operations within the directorates and to facilitate transportation planning decisions in providing one common source to integrate, visualise and manipulate data. This project plays a central role to TM not only on merging all the technical components (network, hardware and software) but in providing a fully empowered solution that can manage all the different aspects of processes, infrastructure, software and data.

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This project is co-financed by the European Union through the European Regional Development Fund, 2007-2013 Italy-Malta OP

MEDNET Project

Mediterranean Network for Custom Procedures and Simplifications of Clearance in Ports

Aim of Project

The MEDNET Project is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund, one of the main funding instruments within the European Regional Policy and makes part of the Operational Programme ’Mediterranean Programme’ 2007-2013.

Mediterranean area consists of countries open to the rest of the world but at the same time peripheral for Europe. Southern Europe is characterised by geographical splintering resulting in reduced growth and restricted transportation facilities, compared to the metropolitan areas of north Europe. The aim of the programme is to strengthen cooperation among Mediterranean countries in order to achieve economic and social cohesion and then sustainable development for the whole European Union.

The project will establish a network of port authorities and transport experts of the Mediterranean – on a long-term basis – focusing on the exchange of experiences concerning port and custom procedures and the simplification of clearance of vessels and cargoes.  This is expected to enhance the common understanding of such procedures and promote the introduction of information systems to ports and potentially other intermodal nodes.

The lead partner of this project is Rete Autostrade Mediteranee RAM) from Italy. Apart from Transport Malta (TM), the other partners involved are Ancona Port Authority S.A and Taranto Port Authority (Italy); National Technical University of Athens (NTUA), Igoumenitsa Port Authority S.A., Patras Port Authority S.A. (Greece); Center for Innovation in Transport (CENIT), Valenciaport Foundation (Spain); Chamber Of Commerce & Industry Of Marseille Provence (France); Cyprus University of Technology, Maritime Institute of Eastern Mediterranean (Cyprus); Institute of Traffic and Transport Ljubljana (Slovenia); Consultores em Transportes Inovação e Sistemas (TIS) (Portugal); Intermodal Transport Cluster (KIP), Port of Rijeka Authority, Zadar Port Authority (Croatia); Albanian Institute of Transport (AIT) (Albania).

The role of Transport Malta

Malta needs to develop a National Single Window (NSW) in preparation for the entry into force of Directive 2010/65/EU in order to simplify and harmonise the administrative procedures related to port formalities by making the electronic transmission of information standard and by rationalising reporting procedures, ensuring that the reporting formalities are requested in a harmonised and coordinated manner.

The Masterplan for the set up of Malta’s National Single Window will feed in the MEDNET Strategic Action Plan which is intended towards the harmonisation of port operations.

As part of the MEDNET project, TM will commission a detailed study which will serve as a Masterplan to be implemented by Transport Malta as the authority and regulator responsible for all Maltese ports to effectively implement the National Single Window.  The study will include:

  • An analysis of the current involvement of all the stakeholders and all legitimate interests  in port operationsOne-to-one consultations with all stakeholders who have vested interests in ports, including port terminals, shipping and freight forwarding agencies as necessary

  • Assessment of any shortfalls that currently are in existence that will hinder the implementation of the National Single Window

  • Analyses of the best practices in place and suggest ways how these can be improved

  • Response time

  • An assessment of the current PortNet system and needs analysis of how this has to be updated to cater for the functionality of a National Single Window application

  • Establish all the legislative, operational and reporting requirements for the National system incorporating all the stakeholders (Port Authorities, Customs, Health, Agents, etc) and international obligations

  • Review and analysis of the SafeSeaNet (SSN) business logic and architecture in light of service requirements

  • Mapping of requirements into functional requirements affecting NSW further evolution and identification of important interdependencies

  • Drawing up of all tendering documentation for all systems to be implemented

  • Undertaking of tangible analysis once the Masterplan is drawn up

  • Provision of data to the Ports Operation Observatory in the Mediterranean (to be created by MedNet project)

Progress to date

The Master Plan for the setup of Malta’s National Maritime Single Window

A call for tenders for a Masterplan for the set up of Malta’s National Maritime Single Window was issued on 12th December 2013.  This aims to meet the requirements of EU Directive 2010/65/EU, which aims to reduce the quantity of data passed to the various port authorities by rationalizing administrative formalities.

Member States are required to set up electronic systems that are secure, integrated, interoperable and accessible to exchange the data included on Customs declarations and the documents that accompany Customs declarations and certificates.  This aims to further develop the concept of a borderless European maritime transport area by considerably reducing the cost and duration of time in port, facilitating import and export formalities and providing a means of monitoring goods more efficiently.  The full benefits of electronic data transmission can only be achieved where there is smooth and effective communications between SafeSeaNet, e-Customs and the electronic systems for entering or calling up data. 

Transport Malta is seeking to coordinate electronic document transmission so that a single message or document can be sent to several departments (Customs, Police Department, Shipping Agents, Health Department, Vet Office) from a ship entering port or its agents.

The call for tenders for the development of the Masterplan has closed and Transport Malta will, with the assistance of consultants, start consultations with various stakeholders and develop the Masterplan.

Mednet International Conference

The International Conference took place on the 29th of October 2014 at the Intercontinental Hotel St Julian’s.  Hosted by Transport Malta, the event brought together project partners, foreign and local stakeholders and beneficiaries. For more information on the event, please click here

Mednet Final Event: "Harmony in Blue"

Mednet capitalization event in Greece - "Harmony in Blue", 27th - 29th May 2015. For more information and registration to the event, please click here

Duration of the project

The MEDNET project started in July 2012 and is scheduled to be finalised by December 2014.

For more information on this project, please visit the official webpage here

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