YRE Photo/description entries from the Religion Department of St. Margaret College Sec. School Verdala, Cospicua for the YRE competition 2019/20.
YRE Photo 1 plus description – by student Jasmine Farrugia
Construction waste an eyesore to our natural environment
On the way to Ghar Lapsi a large hill of construction waste is surely an eyesore to our natural environment. On contacting the Malta Environment and Resources Authority we were told that the area being referred to was previously a quarry which has recently been permitted to be infilled with inert construction material. The intention is to remove what has been a scar in the landscape for years. However, the infilling operations have breached the conditions of the permit. Recently the operator was required to rectify the situation on the ground and to contain its operations within the original boundary of the quarry. Further action may be taken if the operator does not follow the orders given. It seems that the eyesore is the result of a construction waste crisis in Malta. Many constructors are lamenting not finding enough proper places to deposit their waste.
YRE Photo 2 plus description – by student Maya Nussbaum
Baby playpen ends up on Xaqqa Cliffs
On the way to one of the most popular swimming spots in the southern part of Malta, you can stop by the side of the road and make your way towards Xaqqa Cliffs just after passing the quarry. Unfortunately lots of rubbish is ending up in this area and recently a big baby play pan was spotted. A local newspaper reported that few days ago volunteers collected 196kg of waste from Xaqqa Cliffs. Xaqqa has stunning rock formations that leave one amazed at their natural beauty and their unusual shapes. Not to mention the beautiful light blue sea below them. On reporting the waste baby play pan to the Dingli Local Council we were told that this area falls under the protection of the Siggiewi Local Council. We were promised a referral to the responsible team for an immediate clean up of the area.
YRE Photo 3 plus description – by student Maya Nussbaum
Do cliffs need doors?
Recently three big wooden doors were spotted on Rdum ta’ Horrieqa close to the Panorama Road of Dingli Cliffs. Dingli Cliffs are an impressive sight for all visitors; they are 253 meters above sea level facing North Africa. These cliffs offer a unique natural environment with evergreen Maltese Rock-Centaury and many other endemic wild plant species growing. Walking along these majestic cliffs brings one in touch with the beauty and wonders of nature throughout the whole year. So apart from the fact that dumping waste on cliffs and countryside is illegal, these three big wooden doors are an eyesore to the countryside. On contacting the Dingli Local Council we were told that though they offer free service pick up of waste, irresponsible people still prefer to dump their waste in this area. The Local Council promised an immediate clean up action and regular monitoring of the area.
YRE Photo 4 plus description – by student Maya Nussbaum
Burnt Fanta lemonade bottles poison the natural habitat
Trekking on Panorama Road along Dingli Cliffs can easily lead you to a hidden beautiful green area close to Rdum ta’ Horrieqa. Unfortunately illegal dumping of waste in this area has become a huge environmental issue for the Local Council. Recently a big amount of Fanta lemonade plastic bottles were dumped and burned in this area poisoning the living flora and fauna. Plastic is a petroleum-based material and when burned it poisons the air and vegetation with many toxins. Burning plastic and other waste releases dangerous substances such as heavy metals, Persistent Organic Pollutants and other toxics into the air, leaving ash waste residues. Such pollutants can contribute to the development of asthma, cancer and other diseases. On reporting this poisonous dump waste to the Malta Environment and Resources Authority, the responsible Local Council was informed and an immediate clean up action of the area followed.
YRE Photo 5 plus description – by student Maya Nussbaum
Halloween pumpkins scaring the cliffs.
Following the November Halloween festivities many pumpkins used to decorate homes end up being thrown away. Recently a large amount of Halloween pumpkins were spotted in a beautiful area of Dingli Cliffs close to Rdum ta’ Horrieqa. It is really shocking seeing so many rotten Halloween pumpkins scattered on Dingli. Quoting atlantic.com it is estimated that in United States every year more than one billion pounds of pumpkin is thrown away and left to rot in landfills. In the United Kingdom it is estimated that last November people had thrown away eight million pumpkins. When food waste like pumpkins is left to rot, it produces methane gas which is a dangerous greenhouse gas, more so than carbon dioxide. Surely there are other ways for the disposing of rotten pumpkins? They can be used as food for animals or turned into compost soil for fields and gardens.
YRE Photo 6 plus description – by student Jasmine Farrugia
Creaky water pump mills in need of repair
Along the main road from Rabat to Buskett many walkers and drivers easily notice the creaky water pump mills in private fields. Surely two particular creaky water pump mills are spotted in Buskett and they are in urgent need of repair. These are not the only two in the area of Buskett and Dingli which need repair. Windmills are environment friendly as they make use of the power of wind (which is a renewable source of energy) to generate electricity or pump water in fields and farms. The windmill’s turbine blades are able to capture wind energy and turn it into mechanical energy by spinning a generator that creates electricity. A water pump mill is very simple and efficient at the same time. Wind water pump mills form part of the Maltese heritage and more EU funds are needed to restore the damaged ones in our country.
YRE Photo 7 plus description – by student Jasmine Farrugia
Humpty Dumpty downfall of a rubble wall
A very old rubble wall close to the Gibjun tas-Sentini in Rabat has partly fallen down on a very busy road. Rubble walls are part of the Maltese heritage and they are part and parcel of the Maltese conservation areas. Maltese rubble walls (in Maltese: ħajt tas-sejjieħ) very often serve as a habitat for many species of flora and fauna and sometimes serve also as a shelter for bees, butterflies and lizards. Rubble walls have also a very important role in the hydrological cycle of the fields and when it rains heavily, excessive rainwater infiltrates through the holes of the these walls avoiding the risk of field flooding. Old rubble walls are normally built with stones called ‘ġebel tax-xagħri’ and are usually made of the hard-wearing upper coralline limestone. An immediate restoration of this fallen wall in Rabat was carried out as it was a hazard to the passing drivers.