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September 25, 2020

European Commissioner Vella attends opening of new Center of Excellence for Environment Protection in Bucharest: People are the cause of climate threats; we have to fix them. DefMin Les: Completion of Center of Excellence for Environment Protection is appropriate. The goal is to affiliate it to NATO

Climate threats are caused by people, and that is why we have the responsibility to repair what we have done, European Commissioner for the Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Karmenu Vella (photo C) said at the presentation conference of a model of a new Center of Excellence for Environment Protection.

He said that this is his third visit to Romania, that he came as a commissioner, but he is a friend of Romania. He added that it is an honour to be in such a wonderful building, in the best company one could dream of. Romania, he said, has a long history of culture and history, and today, when Romania celebrates 100th anniversary of its unification, we have to look forward to the future. We are talking about our planet about biodiversity, he said, adding that, unfortunately there are many climate change, marine pollution, water and soil pollution threats, for which the people are responsible. People, he said, are the cause of these threats, they have created these issues and have the responsibility to solve them. He said that was one of the reasons for his visit to Romania, and thanked Romanian Prime Minister Viorica Dancila for collaboration. He added that it is not right for people to expect future generations to solve their current problems. Biodiversity is at risk and, what’s more, he added, so is our very existence.

He added that while nature can live well without people, people cannot live without biodiversity.

Vella attended the presentation of the mock-up of the new Centre of Excellence for Environmental Protection on Thursday, when a time capsule was also sealed.

This mid-July, Romania’s Environmental Minister Gratiela Gavrilescu and former Defence Minister Mihai Fifor announced at a joint news conference that Romania would host an environmental protection excellence centre under the coordination of the two ministries.

Romania wants this new entity to win NATO accreditation and be affiliated with this international body.

The building of the new centre will be fully ecofriendly and will be located in Bucharest, in the Antiaeriana area, and funds for the construction will be set aside from the budget of the Environmental Fund Administration (AFM).

The centre’s funding amounts to approximately 6 million euro, coming from the Ministry of the Environment, the Ministry of National Defence and grants, and the centre should be built in two years.

According to official data, on January 1, 2018, there were 24 NATO-accredited centres of excellence with 1,226 positions, and 26 of the 29 NATO members are involved in the work of these centres. Also, the number of sponsoring nations of these entities is 21.


DefMin Les: Completion of Center of Excellence for Environment Protection is appropriate. The goal is to affiliate it to NATO


National Defence Minister Gabriel Les stated on Thursday in the launch of the model of the Center of Excellence for Environment Protection, that its completion is appropriate and the goal is to affiliate it to NATO.

Les participated in the international seminar called “Preservation of Biodiversity in the Carpathian-Danubian-Pontic Area, a century from the Greater Union,” in which the model of the future Center of Excellence for Environment Protection was presented.

“The progress of the contemporary society generated incontestable benefits, but we cannot ignore the price that these galloping developments bring with them. In the security area, concepts have migrated far beyond what we have known as classical, conventional, so the economic, social and ecological dimension must be given the right attention. The care for the environment must be reflected in all our efforts, as these actions fit into the will that we prepare for our children. We will do everything in our power to give nature the chance to restore itself within the limits of a sustainable balance and to the benefit of the generations to come. We are aware that time has no more patience with us. We need to intervene promptly and with the utmost determination to improve these imbalances. The organization of today’s seminar and the completion of the Center for Excellence for Environment Protection are particularly timely initiatives and I entrust you with all my support,” Gabriel Les explained.

He mentioned that the National Defence Ministry (MApN) is permanently concerned with protecting the environment as a dimension of national security and a guarantee for a durable development, by carrying out specific actions in the area.

“We have in mind capitalising on the new energy efficiency concepts and implementing some ecological solutions that are successfully adapted to military activities, all this desiderata will find an answer with the support of the Center of Excellence for environment protection, that aims to be affiliated to NATO and transformed in a NATO Center of Excellence for environment protection,” the Minister said.

Photo: Petrica Mihalache, www.mapn.ro

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