Government continuing to hide power station problems - Labour MP
Labour MP Joe Mizzi insisted in parliament this evening that the diesel engines of the Delimara power station extension had a number of problems which had not been solved yet.
Speaking in parliament on the adjournment, Mr Mizzi said that apart from the major fault in the new steam turbine, revealed by the opposition and then confirmed by the government, there were also serious problems in the diesel engines, which the government was trying to hide.
He said there were problems in engines one, six and eight which included the leakage of cooling water. In two of the engines, 18 cylinder heads needed to be removed, but the problems persisted in some cases.
This should be unacceptable for any new equipment, let along brand new power station engines, he said.
There were also problems in a condenser, where the steam was contaminated by seawater used for cooling as the tubes developed holes. Other problems related to welding.
Mr Mizzi said that equipment used to heat water also developed a fault from the 'hammering' of the heated water. It was replaced, not by a new unit, but by another which was second hand.
The Labour MP said that there were still some problems related to the emissions abatement system including the leakage of material, said to be toxic, from bellows and valves.
Mr Mizzi said the Opposition was continuing to insist that independent experts should be brought over to certify the power plant extension before it was handed over to Enemalta by BWSC.
He also insisted that despite the assurance by Finance Minister Tonio Fenech, Malta had a problem of security of supply of electricity.
He said that although the minister had given figures to show that Delimara Phase 1 and Marsa power station combined had more than enough capacity to meet the winter peak, technically, when contrasted with the usual practice in power stations abroad, capacity was 114mw less than the required excess margin. It appeared, Mr Mizzi said, that Mr Fenech had based his figures on the Marsa power station capacity when new, and not now.