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You are here: Home / The European environment – state and outlook 2010 / Country assessments / Malta / Climate change mitigation - Outlook 2020 (Malta)

Climate change mitigation - Outlook 2020 (Malta)

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SOER Common environmental theme from Malta - Climate Change Mitigation - Oulook 2020
Published: 26 Nov 2010 Modified: 26 Nov 2010

The IPPC’s fourth Assessment Report[1] states that small islands have characteristics that make them especially vulnerable to the effects of climate change, sea-level rise, and extreme events. Indeed, based on UN benchmarks, Malta is expected to suffer moderate impacts from climate change,[2] mainly related to drought, deterioration of freshwater quality and availability, increased risk of floods, soil and coastal erosion, desertification, changes in sea level and biodiversity loss and degradation.[3] As noted above, these impacts are expected to have an effect on human health, as well as on agriculture and fisheries due to the decreased period of rainfall, increase in flood intensity and reduction of soil nutrients as a consequence of run-off. It is also likely that fisheries may be affected by an increase in algal blooms resulting in a decrease in oxygen and changes in sea-water circulation.[4] Furthermore, due to Malta’s dependence on coastal activities, its economic vulnerability is expected to be moderate to moderately high.[5] However, as noted previously, these expectations are based on vulnerability assessments that to date may not have gone into sufficient depth and could be subject to significant changes if different approaches are taken. In order to address the uncertainties associated with the impacts of climate change in Malta, studies based on climate projections and impact scenarios relating to the islands are required, particularly since Malta’s small island characteristics make it especially vulnerable to the effects of climate change, sea-level rise and extreme events. Indeed, Malta will need to adapt to climate change impacts and ensure sustainable development and economic growth within a changing climatic regime.

National sectoral projections with respect to GHG emissions in the years 2010, 2015 and 2020 have now been prepared on the basis of existing and planned measures.[6] These measures are detailed below in the section on mitigation. In the energy sector (including transport), emissions are projected to decrease from 2,696 Gg CO2e in 2007 to 1,936 Gg CO2e in 2020 on the basis of existing measures, while with additional measures, a decrease to 1,782 Gg CO2e is expected. In the industrial processes sector, emissions are projected to increase from 69 Gg CO2e in 2007 to 70 Gg CO2e in 2020. A decrease from 74 Gg CO2e in 2007 to 69 Gg CO2e in 2020, and an increase from 170 Gg CO2e in 2007 to 279 Gg CO2e in 2020 are expected in the agriculture and waste sectors respectively.



[1]               IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change). 2007. Climate Change 2007: Synthesis report. An Assessment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change,  IPCC.

[2]               MRAE (Ministry for Rural Affairs and the Environment). 2004. The First Communication of Malta to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change,  Report prepared by the University of Malta Physics Department (Sammut, C.V. and Micallef, A.) for the Ministry for Rural Affairs and the Environment, April 2004.

[3]               Such assessments are dependent on a number of factors such as the approach taken, when the assessment was carried out, the level of detail.

[4]               MRAE (Ministry for Rural Affairs and the Environment). 2004. The First Communication of Malta to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change,  Report prepared by the University of Malta Physics Department (Sammut, C.V. and Micallef, A.) for the Ministry for Rural Affairs and the Environment, April 2004.

[5]           MRAE (Ministry for Rural Affairs and the Environment). 2004. The First Communication of Malta to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change,  Report prepared by the University of Malta Physics Department (Sammut, C.V. and Micallef, A.) for the Ministry for Rural Affairs and the Environment, April 2004.

[6]               MEPA (Malta Environment &  Planning Authority). 2009. Malta’s Biennial Report on Policies and Measures and Projected Greenhouse Gas Emissions, 2009, March 2009, MEPA, Floriana.

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