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Lithuania to become full member of EUMETSAT


Minister of Environment Gediminas Kazlauska has met with Lars Prahm, Director-General of the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT), and Vida Augulienė, Director of the Lithuanian Hydrometeorological Service. The meeting discussed the results of a seminar held at the Ministry and the issues of Lithuania's further cooperation and preparation for full membership in the EUMETSAT.

On 3 December 2004, Lithuania signed an agreement on cooperation of the State with the EUMETSAT, which the Parliament ratified on 22 September 2005. The agreement has granted the Republic of Lithuania the status of a Cooperating State and has given access to EUMETSAT data, products and services. Under the agreement, the Republic of Lithuania and the EUMETSAT have also assumed a commitment to discuss, by the date of expiry of the agreement or 31 December 2011, their cooperation officially by providing for Lithuania's full membership in the EUMETSAT.

The data of the meteorological Earth satellites operated by the EUMETSAT and its products are especially important for weather and climate forecasts, and they represent part of the operational climate monitoring and global climate change study system. A significant portion of the data obtained from geostationary and polar meteorological satellites is used to identify the chemical properties (pollution) of the atmosphere, study the ozone layer, assess the vegetation cover, identify fires, determine ocean currents, temperature and salinity, research the atmosphere and hydrosphere, etc. The EUMETSAT is expected to become one of the principal suppliers of meteorological and atmospheric data for the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) initiative where Lithuania participates also.

EUMETSAT full membership would be Lithuania's another step towards its involvement in the activities of the European Space Agency (ESA), including the development of the European information society and support for the active global role of the European Union in reducing the effects of climate change.

The seminar "Benefits of EUMETSAT Full Membership for Lithuania" held at the Ministry of Environment was attended by a EUMETSAT delegation headed by its Director-General Lars Prahm. The reporters and speakers at the seminar included Lithuanian and foreign experts. The seminar was organised by the Lithuanian Hydrometeorological Service under the Ministry of Environment.

Ministry of Environment information, tel. 2191869

18 February 2010

Minister of Environment of Lithuania Kęstutis Navickas
Minister of Environment of Lithuania Kęstutis Navickas