Mediterranean cyclone brings warmer and drier October to a damp end
MEP Marlene Mizzi insists on having a common standard charger for all mobile phones by 2017
MEP Marlene Mizzi has urged the European Commission to meet the deadline of presenting a single common charger for all mobile phones by 2017.
During an Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee, MEP Marlene Mizzi asked the European Commission on the state of play on the side of manufacturers towards the 2017 objective of placing on the market only universally compatible mobile chargers.
Back in 2014, the European Parliament approved a Directive laying down harmonised rules for placing radio equipment, including cellular telephones and modems, on the market. The Directive also calls on the manufacturers to make mobile phones compatible with one single mobile phone charger no later than 2017.
MEP Marlene Mizzi said: “We accumulate so many different mobile devices in our lives, such as mobile phones, smart phones, tablets, digital cameras and music players, that are only compatible with specific mobile telephone chargers. This creates real inconvenience and costs for consumers, as well as an unnecessary electronic waste.
“Mobile phone chargers accounted for more than 50,000 tons of electronic waste per year in the EU. Often, when consumers change phones they are left with perfectly well-functioning charger, incompatible with the new model and therefore absolutely useless. This is contributing to tons of electronic waste,” said Marlene Mizzi.
MEP Mizzi, who is the appointed IMCO rapporteur on the Standards for the 21st Century report, said that “a standard charger is an excellent opportunity to first and foremost benefiting consumers and second reduce the environmental impact of electronic equipment from chargers that are sold unnecessarily.
“However, if we want to meet the deadline of 2017, we need commitment on behalf of the Commission and manufacturers to develop European standards for a common charger.”
The European Commission replied that it is working together with the industry on more innovation friendly approach that will be both convenient for consumers and have a positive impact on the environment.
The Commission was positive that in the coming months they will be able together with the manufacturers to come to an agreement on a common and satisfactory solution. October initially enjoyed high temperatures that peaked at 31.2°C on the second day, but stormy weather towards the end of the month served as a none-too-gentle reminder that winter was approaching and clocks had to be turned back, the Met Office at Malta International Airport said yesterday.
The month was warmer than expected, with mean air and sea temperatures surpassing the climatic norm by 2°C and 0.7°C, respectively. The air temperature for October averaged at 23.5°C and only six days hit maximum temperatures that were cooler than this average.
October was also drier than usual. In fact, the 24mm of precipitation that showered the islands fell 51.6mm short of the expected rainfall for this time of year. To date, October 1951 holds the wettest record for this month, with precipitation levels amounting to an extraordinary 476.5mm.
Last month’s storm, which classifies as a typical Mediterranean cyclone, brewed as the month was coming to a close. Low pressure and strong Gregale winds followed.
Last Friday and Saturday of October, the islands were battered by wind gusts that equalled or exceeded 34 knots, picking a maximum velocity of 45 knots at one point on the 29th. On the day, the temperature dipped to the month’s minimum of 16.7°C and a total absence of sunshine added to the gloom.
By the morrow, the wind had died down to a mean speed of 7.1 knots and no precipitation was recorded, allowing cleanups of debris left in the wake of the storm to start. With only 1.4 hours of sunshine registered, the day remained quite gloomy.
In general, October was duller than usual, enjoying 19 hours of sunshine less than the climatic norm of 218 hours. This resulted in part from a heavier mean cloud cover of 4.3 oktas, rather than the 3.6 oktas expected for this time of year.