About 30 million people annually become climate refugees

The UN estimates that by 2050 the planet will be 200 million climate refugees

About 30 million people each year become "climate refugees" — people are forced to change their place of residence due to environmental degradation, lack of resources and natural disasters.

This statement was referring to the experts of the Council of Europe was announced today in St. Petersburg, where in the "Palais des Congres" in Strelna passes the 12th Ministerial Meeting of States Parties Open Partial Agreement of the Council of Europe / OPA Council of Europe / forecasting, prevention and assistance the event of natural and man-made disasters.

The main topic discussed by the participants of the meeting — the impact of climate change on the frequency and intensity of natural disasters and the challenge of ensuring safety in these populations and territories.

The draft Medium-Term Plan for 2011-2015, to be adopted at this ministerial meeting, stressed that "Over the last ten years in Europe and the Mediterranean have increased the impact of natural disasters and man-made disasters" and "climate change associated with human activities, can make the European and Mediterranean societies more vulnerable." As an example of these natural disasters in the last few months at a meeting of OPA mentioned unprecedented forest fires in Russia, floods in Poland and Pakistan, landslides in China.

The limited financial resources of the international agreement "not to allow it to carry out rescue operations", says the Medium Term Plan. Therefore, areas of cooperation will be the exchange of scientific knowledge, the development of early warning systems for emergency rescue training, experts and specialists in the field of disaster medicine.

OPA was signed in March 1987, after the Athens 1st Ministerial Meeting on the prevention and elimination of emergency situations. The agreement is open for signature for the member countries of the Council of Europe and countries outside it. It now encompasses 26 states. The agreement involved include the European Commission, UNESCO, WHO and the UN humanitarian office. Japan has the status of observer.

Russian Federation as the successor to the Soviet Union began its participation in the OPA Council of Europe in 1991. The initial phase involved in the OPA CE contribute to taking the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations of active practical cooperation with a number of European countries, many reputable international organizations. Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations have also provided an opportunity to carry out the development of a number of joint projects on the use of space technologies for the prevention and mitigation of natural and technological disasters.

The active position in the Council of Europe and the OPA held in Moscow in 1993, the 5th Ministerial Meeting of the consolidated its leading position in Russia as a donor / listing the annual financial contribution and / ideologue of this Agreement. First Deputy Minister of Emergency Situations of Russia Yuri Vorobyov became a permanent correspondent of the Agreement. In 2010, the Russian Presidency of the Council of Europe OPA.

Source: ITAR-TASS

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