A €170,000 investment by the Environment and Resources Authority (ERA) in a rigid-hull inflatable boat (RHIB) was launched to further strengthen enforcement in maritime activities. The RHIB was inaugurated in the presence of Minister for the Environment, Energy and Enterprise Miriam Dalli and the Environment and Resource Authority Acting CEO Kevin Mercieca.

This €170,000 investment will enable ERA to increase its autonomy and strengthen its surveillance and monitoring within Marine Protected Area and other commercial activities such as fish farms“, said Minister Miriam Dalli.

Minister Dalli urged the public to dispose of waste responsibly.

In summer there’s an increase of waste disposal, especially near beaches due to increased activity at sea, and when waste is disposed of irresponsibly, it will end up on our beaches leaving a negative impact on marine life. Through this investment and enforcement, ERA will continue working with other entities to raise further awareness and reduce this impact on the marine environment“, said the minister.

ERA’s Acting CEO Kevin Mercieca explained that this investment will strengthen ERA’s role in assuring surveillance in sensitive zones which fall under the legal requirements imposed by law. When issuing permits for commercial activities at sea, ERA imposes several conditions to operators which are legally binding. These conditions for their operations are intended to ensure environment protection in such activities.

In the past weeks, 20 ERA officials were trained to operate at sea and make the necessary inspections. ERA will now be able to monitor areas which could not be reached from land“, added Mr Mercieca.

The vessel is an Altamarea WAVE27 measuring an overall length of 8.45m and is equipped with two 150HP Yamaha engines. It weighs 1,250kgs, can accommodate up to 12 passengers and is capable of reaching speeds of over 40 knots.​​

30 July 2022