For years now the Labour Party has been criticizing the PN for spending around €200 million to BWSC to turn us into its guinea pigs and experiment on us with the emission abatement equipment in the new power station to minimise pollution. BWSC needed to propose such equipment to have its bid qualify for the contract it was awarded.
In the new power station at Delimara, BWSC is using a combination of anti-pollution equipment that has not been tried and tested anywhere else in the world, though to reassure us Enemalta hinted in 2009 that “something similar was used in Korea.”
In awarding the contract to BWSC the Adjudication Board appointed by Enemalta concluded that this equipment is a “prototype setup. Whilst there are references for each of the proposed plant items, the combination itself is a prototype… A technical assessment was sought from an independent international consulting firm to verify the plausibility of the proposed airbourne emission abatement technologies. The report confirms that the proposed plant and the performance data quoted by the Bidders were indeed plausible.”
In July 2008 the international consulting firm Lahmeyer had evaluated the BWSC proposal and said: “Due to the fact that there are no international references for the proposed combination of flue gas cleaning technologies after a Diesel Generator Unit power plant, it is recommended to include liquidated damages in the Enemalta Power Station Contract to be associated with non-compliance with the stipulated emission limits.”
Lahmeyer International had declared BWSC’s emission abatement equipment to be ‘plausible’? According to ‘Webster’s Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language’
“Plausible describes that which has the appearance of truth but might be deceptive. The thing that is plausible strikes the superficial judgement favourably, it may or may not be true.” The Oxford English Dictionary concurs: “Plausible apparently reasonable or probable, without necessarily being so.”
Why did the PN government not choose a power station plant whose emission abatement equipment is ‘guaranteed’ to work?
Experts in the area who have carried out technical evaluations of power stations plants agree that government should not have chosen for Malta a plant whose combination of emission abatement equipment is a prototype setup. In 2009 the Labour Party asked: What if something goes wrong? Why should we serve as guinea pigs? Subjecting BWSC to liquidated damages is not enough to heal the damage done to our health and environment if for some reason or other this prototype setup fails to deliver.