Students from nine different schools gathered at Buskett to discuss their ideas for a better environment with Environment Minister Miriam Dalli and the Environment and Resources Authority (ERA).

The activity followed similar ones held last year, in which Minister Dalli and schoolchildren agreed to continue meeting every year to discuss new proposals and assess progress on several green initiatives.

The children talked about different topics, including urban greening, sustainable transport, access to natural sites, groundwater, marine litter, climate change, waste management and energy efficiency. Among different ideas, they proposed organic farming on roofs, more family picnic areas, information campaigns on the impacts of littering, increased greenery in classrooms and adventure zones in parks, such as the recently opened obstacle course race (OCR) area at the San Klement Park.

Students from St Thomas More College Santa Lucija Secondary School, Sacred Heart College, St Ignatius College Qormi San Gorg Primary School, St Nicholas College Rabat Primary School and Dingli Secondary School, Maria Regina College Mosta Secondary School, St Margaret College Senglea Primary School, San Andrea School and St Benedict College Kirkop Secondary School participated in the event, which was hosted at Ambjent Malta’s new educational centre, within the grounds of the Buskett Woodlands.

Minister Miriam Dalli thanked the students for accepting ERA’s invitation to share their ideas on the environment.

“Last year we met and discussed many interesting ideas. ERA presented an update on how Malta is implementing many of them as part of our shared mission for a more sustainable future. I encourage children and youths to continue to come forward and join in the public debate about our environment. Your ideas are very important to us. All institutions must make sure to listen to what you have to say, as ERA is doing with these meetings. I look forward to meeting you again next year,” Miriam Dalli said.

ERA Chief Executive Officer Kevin Mercieca also emphasised the importance of listening to younger generations during the development of long-term plans and strategies which will address the future of the environment. “The views, opinions and proposals offered by children and youths give us food for thought in shaping a future which will be most fitting for their wellbeing and quality of life,” he said.

Following the discussion, Ambjent Malta guided the children to an educational walk at the Buskett Woodlands, where they also participated in a hands-on session on sustainable Christmas crafts. The event was also supported by Ekoskola, a Nature Trust – FEE Malta initiative across all schools in Malta and Gozo, to empower students to appreciate the environment and seek sustainable actions in their lives.

ERA Chairperson Vince Cassar and Ekoskola coordinator Paul Pace and other educators and officials also participated in this event.

28 December 2023