All for clean air

Published: Saturday 15 October 2005

Air Pollution Malta

The transport authority of the tiny European country Malta has recently has announced a new initiative to reduce pollution: the sms4 Clean Air Initiative.

The initiative empowers Maltese citizens to participate in government efforts to reduce vehicular pollution. The procedure is simple. People can sms the Malta Transport Authority (mta) on seeing a vehicle emitting excessive exhaust. The sms has to simply contain the offending vehicle's registration number.

The mta then directs the owner of the vehicle to take the vehicle to the country's Licensing and Testing Directorate (ltd) within three days. Failing the test means a fine of 20 Maltese lira (us $57.92) and the owner is given a week to get the vehicle repaired to ltd's satisfaction.

T he mta has allayed fears of bogus sms reports. Officials of the transport authority say that false sms reports will not be tolerated. Local people seem excited about this initiative. In just three days after sms 4 was introduced, 639 reports were logged with the mta. We do not know if all these were genuine.

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