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Preparing to take the lead: A dialogue with Europe's non-governmental organizations


Preparing to take the lead: A dialogue with Europe's non-governmental organizations


Today, Lithuania's Minister of the Environment Valentinas Mazuronis will present Lithuania's priorities for its presidency of the EU Council to a large group of non-governmental organization representatives assembled at a European Environmental Bureau seminar in Vilnius. At the seminar, these non-governmental organizations, which represent millions of citizens concerned about environmental issues, will summarize their expectations of Lithuania as the EU Council's new temporary president.

During the second half of this year, almost forty environmental protection- and climate change-related questions will come before the EU Council. Many of the laws that govern the evaluation of environmental impact, acceptable waste management, preservation of biological diversity, maintenance of air quality, and the correct use of medical resources will be of special interest to non-governmental organizations.

It is now an accepted practice for the European Environmental Bureau to prepare a memorandum listing the 10 most pressing environmental problems that must be dealt with during a given nation's presidency of the EU Council. When its presidency begins, Lithuania can expect to receive such a memorandum as well. Toward the end of Lithuania's presidency in December, the EEB will meet again to evaluate the progress that the leading nation has made towards solving the public's environmental concerns.

The EEB includes more than 140 various environmental protection organizations from almost every EU nation. The Bureau's representatives work together with members of the European Commission, Parliament and Council. They make every effort to monitor and influence the preparation and implementation of environmental laws. So far, not one Lithuanian non-governmental organization has joined this bureau.

It's not the first time that Minister Valentinas Mazuronis has contacted EEB General Secretary Jeremy Wates and invited him to form closer ties with Lithuania's non-governmental actors. “I hope that the seminar will convince one or more Lithuanian non-governmental organization to join this influential organization. That would help us expand our perspective on our work from a local one to a global one,” said Valentinas Mazuronis. “The public's opinions and constructive suggestions are always important, especially when solving sensitive environmental issues,” added the Minister of Environment.

Information of the Ministry of Environment, tel. 8~706 63660
27 May 2013

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