Ministers’ Deputies
CM Documents

CM(2007)21 6 February 20071
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989 Meeting, 14 March 2007
9 Sustainable development


9.2 11th Ministerial Session of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) “Protecting societies from disasters through preparedness and prevention: a political priority” (Marrakech, Kingdom of Morocco, 31 October 2006)

Report prepared by the Directorate General IV – Education, Culture and Heritage, Youth and Sport (Executive Secretariat of the EUR-OPA Major Hazards Agreement)

Item to be prepared by the Rapporteur Group on Education, Culture, Sport, Youth and Environment (GR-C) at its meeting on 28 February 2007

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Introduction

1. The 11th Ministerial Session of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement
(EUR-OPA) was held in Marrakech, Kingdom of Morocco, on 31 October 2006 at the invitation of the Moroccan authorities, with Mr. Mohamed EL YAZGHI, Moroccan Minister of Territorial Development, Water and the Environment, in the Chair.

2. Representatives from twenty member states of the Agreement participated in the 11th Ministerial Session, ten of which were represented at ministerial level. Four other Council of Europe member states also took part as well as Mexico. The European Commission, UNESCO, the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the International Civil Defence Organisation, the European Forum for Local and Regional Disaster Management, the Development Bank of the Council of Europe, the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe and the European Conference of Ministers responsible for Regional Planning were represented. Two experts from the Euro-mediterranean Centre for evaluation and prevention of seismic risk in Rabat and the President of the “Audit” Sub-committee participated in the debates.

    3. The agenda, the list of participants, the Resolution and Recommendations adopted are set out in the appendices to the present report.

    4. The 11th Ministerial Session comprised four sessions:

      - Disaster prevention, a political concern for Europe and the Mediterranean: experiences and needs;
      - Disaster prevention, a political concern for Europe and the Mediterranean: priorities for the future;
      - Building a culture of risk through education;
      - Risk prevention at local and regional levels.

The participants examined the possible answers of the various actors concerned (international institutions, national, regional and local authorities, scientists …) to the major challenge set by natural and technological risks. They looked into innovative actions aiming to promote an increased risk culture amongst the population as well as a better management by all the authorities competent in disaster situations.

5. At the close of the first two sessions, the Ministers unanimously adopted a political Resolution on priorities for action in the European and Mediterranean space as well as the Agreement’s new Medium Term Plan 2007-2011 (see Appendix 3).

The Resolution reaffirms risk prevention as a priority at local, national and international levels by placing the future work of the Agreement in line with the Hyogo Framework of Action adopted in 2005 following the tsunami in South-East Asia.

The Agreement’s fourth Medium Term Plan, which recommends a preventive approach to natural and technological risks, will focus on a limited number of issues in line with the priorities defined:

o policy, legislative and institutional aspects of risk reduction;
o training, education and information: building a culture of risk reduction;
o research aimed at identifying, assessing and monitoring risks and their impact
and enhancing early warning systems;
o specific programmes aimed at reducing the underlying risk factors;
o effective response through service activity: European Warning System,
psychological assistance to victims.

The network of specialised Centres of the Agreement has to be reinforced and enlarged as necessary, relying on the technical and scientific capabilities of the Centres to conduct specific activities.

In this political Resolution the Ministers furthermore request the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe to support as appropriate the implementation of the Medium Term Plan 2007-2011 of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) and to encourage the member states of the Council of Europe which are not party to the Partial Agreement to consider joining this intergovernmental co-operation framework.

6. The third session “Building a culture of risk through education” highlighted the essential role of education for risk reduction in order to improve the resilience of societies facing technological and natural hazards.
At the close of this session the Ministers unanimously adopted a recommendation on disaster risk reduction through education at school (see Appendix 4). This Recommendation invites member states to set about assessing risk education within their current school system in order to fill any existing gaps through an increased participation of all school actors (teachers, pupils, institutions, parents,…) and to set up both theoretical and practical training as a means of reducing the vulnerability of the populations facing risks.
The Ministers recommended that member states and observer states inform the Committee of Permanent Correspondents of the Agreement by the end of 2007 of the measures taken to implement this Recommendation.

7. The fourth session “Risk prevention at local and regional levels” illustrated how local and regional authorities are in the forefront of mitigating the consequences of major disasters and that collaboration with national authorities is fundamental in order to increase the resilience of societies.

At the close of this session, the Ministers unanimously adopted a recommendation on risk prevention at local and regional levels (see Appendix 5).

The recommendation emphasises the need to better involve all local and regional authorities in decision making on risk prevention and reduction, taking into account the fact that they already possess a number of competences (planning, education, fire fighting, rescue, health, industry, control, etc.) which, when put to proper use, could be of great help in minimising the effects of natural hazards and industrial accidents on people and property.

In this context, the Ministers welcomed the fruitful co-operation between the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe and the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA).

8. The Chair welcomed the rich diversity of the discussions conducted at the Ministerial Session and informed the delegations that the 20th anniversary of the Agreement would be celebrated on 20 March 2007 in Strasbourg on the occasion of the next meeting of the Committee of Permanent Correspondents.

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Appendix 1

LIST OF PARTICIPANTS

ARMENIE/ARMENIA
Mr. Aram TANANYAN, Major General, Deputy Director of the Rescue Service of Armenia, Ministry of Territorial Administration of the Republic of Armenia, YEREVAN
Mr. S. BADALYAN, Permanent Correspondent, Counsellor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia, Director of the European Interregional Centre for Training of Rescuers, YEREVAN

AZERBAIDJAN/AZERBAIJAN
Mr. Kamaladdin HEYDAROV, Minister of Emergency Situations, Ministry of Emergency Situations, BAKU
Mr. Rafail MIRZAYEV, First Deputy Minister, Ministry of Emergency Situations, BAKU
Mr. Etibar MIRZAYEV, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Emergency Situations, BAKU
Mr. Sabir AGHABAYOV, Ambassador of Azerbaijan in Morocco
Mr. Abdoullayer GOUDRAT, Head of Department, Ministry of Emergency Situations, BAKU
Mr. Roustian JAFAROV, Embassy of Azerbaijan in Morocco
Mr. Alibaba BABAYEV, Attaché, Embassy of Azerbaijan in Morocco

BELGIQUE / BELGIUM
Madame Monique DE KNOP, Représentant le Ministre de l’Intérieur de la Belgique, Présidente du Comité de Direction, Service Public Fédéral Intérieur, BRUXELLES
Monsieur Philippe ROSSEEL, Conseiller Général, Service Public Fédéral Intérieur, BRUXELLES
Madame Monique BERNAERTS, Conseiller, Service Public Fédéral Intérieur, BRUXELLES
Madame Alexandre SONCK, Attaché, SPF Intérieur, DG Centre de Crise, BRUXELLES

BULGARIE / BULGARIA
Mr. Angel CHAKAROV, Deputy Minister, Ministry of State Policy of Disasters and Accidents, SOFIA
Mr. Andrey STOIMENOV, Head of Department, Permanent Correspondent, Ministry of State Policy of Disasters and Accidents, SOFIA

CHYPRE/CYPRUS
Mr. Christos KYRIAKIDES, representing Mr. Neoklis SILIKIOTIS, Minister of the Interior, Commissioner, Cyprus Civil Defence, NICOSIA
Mr. Michael PARELLIS, Chief, Publication Administration and Personnel Officer, Ministry of the Interior, NICOSIA

CROATIE/CROATIA
Mr. Duro POLDRUGAC, Director, National Protection and Rescue Department, ZAGREB
Mr. Damir TRUT, Deputy Director, National Protection and Rescue Department, ZAGREB
Mr. Damir CEMERIN, Cabinet Secretary, National Protection and Rescue Department, ZAGREB
Ms Arabela VAHTARIC, Head of International Relations Division, National Protection and Rescue Directorate, ZAGREB

ESPAGNE / SPAIN
Monsieur Justo Tomás ZAMBRANA PINEDA, Sous Secrétaire, Ministère de l’Intérieur, MADRID
Monsieur Francisco Javier VELAZQUEZ LOPEZ, Directeur Général de la Protection Civile et les Urgences, Ministère de l’Intérieur, MADRID
Monsieur Jesús RODRIGUEZ RIVERA, Agregado de Interior, Ambassade d'Espagne à RABAT

EX-REPUBLIQUE YOUGOSLAVE DE MACEDOINE / FORMER YUGOSLAV REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA
Mr. Mihail GAREVSKI, Permanent Correspondent, Director of the Institute of Earthquake Engineering and Engineering Seismology (IZIIS), University "St. Cyril and Methodius", SKOPJE

FRANCE
Monsieur René FEUNTEUN, Correspondant Permanent, Ministère de l’Ecologie et du Développement Durable, Secrétaire du COPRNM, Direction de la Prévention des Pollutions et des Risques, PARIS
Monsieur Patrick AUDEBERT, Chef du Bureau des Risques Majeurs, Ministère de l’Intérieur et de l’Aménagement du Territoire, Direction de la défense et de la sécurité civiles, Sous-direction de la gestion des risques, ASNIERES-SUR-SEINE

GEORGIE / GEORGIA
Mr. Davit TKESHELASHVILI, Minister of Environment Protection and Natural Resources of Georgia, Ministry of the Environment, TBILISI
Mr. Tamaz CHELIDZE, Permanent Correspondent, Institute of Geophysics, TBILISI

GRECE/GREECE
Mr. Panagiotis FOURLAS, General Secretary for Civil Protection, Ministry of the Interior, Public Administration and Decentralization, General Secretariat for Civil Protection, ATHENS
Mr. Dimitrios ALEXANDRIS, Head of Planning Section, Head of Natural Disasters Planning Prevention and Response Department, Ministry of the Interior, Public Administration and Decentralization, General Secretariat for Civil Protection, ATHENS
Mr. Konstantinos MAKROPOULOS, President of the European Centre for the Prevention and Forecasting of Earthquakes (ECPFE) and the Earthquake Planning and Protection Organisation (EPPO), ATHENS

LIBAN/LEBANON
Monsieur Alexandre SURSOCK, représentant du Liban mandaté par le Conseil des Ministres libanais, Correspondant Permanent, Directeur, Centre National de Géophysique, BEYROUTH 

LUXEMBOURG
Monsieur Michel FEIDER, Correspondant Permanent, Directeur, Administration des Services de Secours, LUXEMBOURG

MAROC/MOROCCO
Monsieur Mohamed EL YAZGHI, Ministre de l’Aménagement du Territoire, de l’Eau et de l’Environnement, Ministère de l’Aménagement du Territoire, de l’Eau et de l’Environnement , RABAT
Madame Kadiya ALJEDDY, représentant Monsieur El JAZOULY, Maire de Marrakech, Communauté Urbaine de Marrakech
Madame Rajae CHAFIL, Correspondant Permanent, Présidente de l’Accord, Inspecteur Régional de l’Aménagement du Territoire et de l’Environnement pour la région de Rabat-Sale, Zemmour-Zaers, Ministère de l’Aménagement du Territoire, de l’Eau et de l’Environnement, RABAT 
Monsieur Abdelhay ZEROUALI, Correspondant Permanent, Directeur de la Surveillance et de la Prévention des Risques, Ministère de l’Aménagement du Territoire, de l’Eau et de l’Environnement, RABAT
Monsieur Abdelaziz BELKEZIZ, Inspecteur Régional, Inspection Régionale de Marrakech-Tensift-Al Haouz, Ministère de l’Aménagement du Territoire, de l’Eau et de l’Environnement, MARRAKECH
Le Colonel Mohamed BENZIANE, Ministère de l’Intérieur, Service de la Protection Civile, RABAT
Ministère de l’Aménagement du Territoire, de l’Eau et de l’Environnement
Mme Farah BOUQARTACHA, Chef du Service Prévention
Mlle Laila EL FOUNTI, cadre au Service Prévention
Monsieur HAFID, Direction du Contrôle et de la Réglementation
Monsieur Majid BENBIBA, Directeur de la Recherche et de la Planification de l’Eau
Monsieur Lakbir CHERKAOUI
Madame A. CHAFII
Monsieur Mustapha MOUMEN

Monsieur Lamani SALAHEDDINE, Photographe
Ministère de l’Intérieur
Monsieur Khaled EL YAGOUBI, Cabinet du Secrétaire Général de l’Intérieur
Mr Youness BETGHRAOUI, Direction des Affaires Générales
Le Général Abdelkrim EL YAAGOUBI
Lt- Colonel Driss AMEJRAR, Commandant de la Région de Marrakech
Monsieur Mohammed PKROV
Wilaya de Marrakech
Monsieur Samir FACHTALI, Chef du District de Gueliz
Monsieur Mohammed CHTIOUI, Directeur de l’Agence du Bassin Hydraulique du Tensift
Monsieur Abdeliiah DAWI
Monsieur M. HAMOUIYI
Monsieur Mohammed IKINOV
Monsieur Omar ABASSI
Monsieur Mohammed RABIHI,
Monsieur Larbi ELBAZ
Monsieur Mohammed CHOUIKI, Gendarmerie de Marrakech
Monsieur Noureddine KBSR, Gendarmerie Royale
Monsieur Lahcen AZZABI, Communication et Presse
Monsieur Said MANAR, A.A. Hivernage
Monsieur Abdelilah EDDAOUI, A.A. Hivernage
Monsieur Fechtali SAMIR, C.D. Hivernage
Monsieur A. LKASMI
Monsieur Mohammed ABOUFIRASS
Monsieur A. KHATIB
Monsieur Hafid CHIROB
Monsieur Mohamed RABIAT
Monsieur Larbi ELBAZ

PRINCIPAUTE DE MONACO/ PRINCIPALITY OF MONACO
Monsieur Paul MASSERON, Ministre de l’Intérieur, Département de l’Intérieur, Ministère d’Etat, MONACO
Monsieur le Colonel Yannick BERSIHAND, Correspondant Permanent, Commandant Supérieur de la Force Publique de la Principauté de Monaco, Force Publique de Monaco, MONACO

PORTUGAL
Mr Arnaldo CRUZ, Director General of the Portuguese National Service for Fire and Civil Protection, representing the Portuguese Minister of the Interior, CARNAXIDE
Mrs Maria Emília MENDONÇA, Adviser to the Director General of the Portuguese National Service for Fire and Civil Protection, CARNAXIDE
Mr. Aleixo DORES, Deputy Permanent Correspondent, Portuguese National Service for Fire and Civil Protection, Office for Public and International Relations, CARNAXIDE

ROUMANIE / ROMANIA
Mr. László BORBÉLY, Delegate Minister for Public Works and Territorial Planning, Ministry of Transport, Construction and Tourism, BUCHAREST
Monsieur Vasile POPOVICI, Ambassadeur de Roumanie au Royaume du Maroc, RABAT
Mr. Iuliu BARA, Permanent Correspondent, Personal Adviser to the Delegate Minister for Public Works and Territorial Planning, Ministry of Transport, Construction and Tourism, BUCHAREST

FEDERATION DE RUSSIE / RUSSIAN FEDERATION
Mr. Yuri BRASHNIKOV, Director of International Co-operation Department, Commander of the Russian National Corps of Emergency Humanitarian Response, EMERCOM of Russia, MOSCOW
Mr. Vladimir KAKUSHA, Deputy Director, Department of International Co-operation, EMERCOM of Russia, MOSCOW
Mr. Valery AKIMOV, Director of the Centre of Strategic Studies of EMERCOM of Russia, MOSCOW
Mr. Alexander KUDRIN, Director, European Centre for New Technologies in Management of Major Natural and Technological Disasters, MOSCOW

TURQUIE / TURKEY
Mr. Faruk Nafiz ÖZAK, Minister of Public Works and Settlement, ANKARA 
Mr. Birol UZUNAY, Adviser, Press and Public Relations of the Minister of Public Works and Settlement, ANKARA 
Mr. Muhammed ADAK, Permanent Correspondent, Ministry of Public Works and Settlement, ANKARA
Mr. Necdet SEYFE, Director, European Natural Disasters Training Centre (AFEM), General Directorate of Technical Research and Implementation, Dept. of Foreign Relations, ANKARA
Monsieur Emin TUZUN, Attaché, Ambassade de la Turquie à RABAT
Mr. Mustafa ALBAYRAK, Security guard to the Minister

UKRAINE
Mr. Volodymyr KHOLOSHA, Deputy Minister of Emergency Management, Ministry of Ukraine for Emergencies and Affairs of Population Protection from the Consequences of the Chernobyl Catastrophe, KYIV
Mr. Viktor POYARKOV, Director of the European Centre of Technological Safety (TESEC), KYIV

ORGANISATIONS INTERNATIONALES / INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATIONS

COMMISSION EUROPEENNE / EUROPEAN COMMISSION
Ms. Pia BUCELLA, Director for Communication, Legal Affairs and Civil Protection, Directorate General Environment, European Commission, BRUSSELS
Ms. Fiorella PEROTTO, Principal Administrator, Directorate General Environment, DG env-A.3, European Commission, BRUSSELS
Monsieur Marcello MORI, Délégation de la Commission Européenne au Maroc, RABAT

UNESCO
Mr. Badoui ROUHBAN, représentant le Directeur Général de l’UNESCO, Correspondant permanent, Chef de la Section de la Prévention des Catastrophes, PARIS

I.S.D.R - NATIONS UNIES : STRATEGIE INTERNATIONALE POUR LA PREVENTION DES CATASTROPHES / UNITED NATIONS : INTERNATIONAL STRATEGY FOR DISASTER REDUCTION
Mr. Sálvano BRICEÑO, Director of UN/ISDR, GENEVA
Ms. Paola ALBRITO, UN/ISDR, Programme officer, GENEVA
Mr. Karl-Otto ZENTEL, Manaing Director, German Committee for Disaster Reduction (DKVV), BONN
Monsieur Djillali BENOUAR, represéntant UN/ISDR Africa, Director, Built Environment Res. Lab. (LBE), University of Bab Ezzouar, Faculty of Civil Engineering, ALGER

I.F.R.C. - FEDERATION INTERNATIONALE DES SOCIETES DE LA CROIX-ROUGE ET DU CROISSANT-ROUGE / INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF RED CROSS AND RED CRESCENT SOCIETIES
Mr. Ibrahim Mohamed OSMAN, Deputy Secretary General, IFRC, GENEVA
Monsieur Mohamed ASSOUALI, Chef de Division des Projets, Croissant Rouge Marocain, Administration Centrale du Croissant Rouge Marocain RABAT
Ms. Anne E. LECLERC, Head of Delegation of the Regional Office for North Africa, IFRC, TUNIS

ORGANISATION INTERNATIONALE DE PROTECTION CIVILE (O.I.P.C.)
INTERNATIONAL CIVIL DEFENCE ORGANISATION (I.C.D.O)
Mr. E. VASILIEV, Secretary General Assistant, ICDO, GENEVA

EUROPEAN FORUM FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL DISASTER MANAGEMENT /
FORUM EUROPEEN POUR LA GESTION DES CATASTROPHES AU NIVEAU LOCAL ET REGIONAL
Mr. Jan MANS, President, European Forum for Local and Regional Disaster Management
MAASTRICHT
Mr. Harrie JEURISSEN, Secretary General, European Forum for Local and Regional Disaster Management, MAASTRICHT

OBSERVATEURS / OBSERVERS

ALLEMAGNE / GERMANY
Mr. Franz-Josef MOLITOR, Head of Section International Affairs, Federal Office of Civil Protection and Disaster Asistance, (BBK), Bundesamt für Bevölkerungsschutz und Katastrophenhilfe, BONN

MEXIQUE/MEXICO
Monsieur Miguel Antonio CUESTA, Conseiller, Ambassade du Mexique au Maroc, RABAT

SAINT-SIEGE/HOLY SEE
S.E.R. Mgr. Antonio SOZZO, Nonce Apostolique, RABAT, Maroc

SERBIE / SERBIA
Mr. Predrag MARIC, Adviser to the Minister of the Interior, Head of Sector, Ministry of the Interior, Sector for Protection and Rescue, BELGRADE
Mr. Ivan BARAS, Responsible for International Co-operation, Ministry of the Interior, Sector for Protection and Rescue, BELGRADE

SUISSE/SWITZERLAND
Mr. Giancarlo BULETTI, Senior Adviser, Division of Multilateral Affairs and Special Assignments, Swiss Humanitarian Aid, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, BERN

EXPERTS
Monsieur Abdelouahad BIROUK, Membre du Comité de Gestion du Centre Euro-Méditerranéen pour l’Evaluation et la Prévention du Risque Sismique (CEPRIS),
abrité par le Centre National pour la Recherche Scientifique et Technique, RABAT, Maroc
Monsieur Azelarab EL MOURAOUAH, Coordonnateur du Centre Euro-Méditerranéen pour l’Evaluation et la Prévention du Risque Sismique (CEPRIS), abrité par le Centre National pour la Recherche Scientifique et Technique, RABAT, Maroc
Monsieur Jean-Mathias GOERENS, Président de la Sous-Commission Audit, Premier Conseiller de la Cour Administrative, LUXEMBOURG

CONSEIL DE L’EUROPE / COUNCIL OF EUROPE

DIRECTION GENERALE IV – EDUCATION, CULTURE ET PATRIMOINE, JEUNESSE ET SPORT / DIRECTORATE GENERAL IV – EDUCATION, CULTURE AND HERITAGE, YOUTH AND SPORT

Madame Gabriella BATTAINI-DRAGONI, Directrice Générale, Director General

SECRETARIAT EXECUTIF DE L’ACCORD EUR-OPA RISQUES MAJEURS /
EXECUTIVE SECRETARIAT OF THE EUR-OPA MAJOR HAZARDS AGREEMENT

Mr Eladio FERNANDEZ-GALIANO, Executive Secretary/ Secrétaire Exécutif
Mr Francesc PLA, Secretary of the Committee of Permanent Correspondents / Secrétaire du Comité des Correspondants Permanents
Madame Sylvette PFISTER, Assistant, Assistante
Madame Linda ROLLIN, Assistant, Assistante

BANQUE DE DEVELOPPEMENT DU CONSEIL DE L’EUROPE/
DEVELOPMENT BANK OF THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE
Madame Giusi PAJARDI, Head of the Partial Agreement of the Council of Europe Development Bank

LE CONGRES DES POUVOIRS LOCAUX ET REGIONAUX DU CONSEIL DE L’EUROPE / THE CONGRESS OF LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES OF THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE
Mr. Ian MICALLEF, representing the President of the Congress, President of the Chamber for Local Authorities of the Congress
Mr. Anders KNAPE, Vice President of the Congress, City of Karlstad, Sweden
Mrs Gaye DOGANOGLU, President of the Committee on Sustainable Development of the Congress, ANTALYA, Turkey
Mrs. Antonella CAGNOLATI, Deputy Chief Executive, Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe

CONFERENCE EUROPEENNE DES MINISTRES RESPONSABLES DE L'AMENAGEMENT DU TERRITOIRE / EUROPEAN CONFERENCE OF MINISTERS RESPONSIBLE FOR REGIONAL PLANNING (CEMAT)
Madame Maria José FESTAS, Présidente, Comité des Hauts Fonctionnaires de la Conférence des Ministres responsables de l’Aménagement du Territoire du Conseil de l’Europe, LISBOA / Portugal

INTERPRETES/ INTERPRETERS
Mr. Youri BOBROV
Ms. Catherine EMERY
Mr. Jan KROTKI
Ms. Penelope MACDONELL
Ms. Irène MARKOWICZ
Mr. Alexei MILKO

APOLOGISED FOR ABSENCE/ EXCUSES

BOSNIE ET HERZEGOVINE/BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA
Mr. Samir AGIC, Assistant Minister, Head of Department for Civil Protection, Ministry of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina, SARAJEVO
Mr. Milivoje POPOVIC, Head of Division for International Relations, Department for Civil Protection, Ministry of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina, SARAJEVO

CROATIE/CROATIA
Mr. Ivica KIRIN, Minister of the Interior, Zagreb, Croatia

FRANCE
Madame Nelly OLIN, Ministre de l’Ecologie et du Développement Durable, PARIS
Monsieur Nicolas SARKOZY, Ministre d’Etat, Ministre de l’Intérieur et de l’Aménagement du Territoire, PARIS
Monsieur Brice HORTEFEUX, Ministre délégué aux collectivités territoriales, PARIS

HONGRIE/HUNGARY
Dr. Réka BECZE, Senior Desk Officer, National Directorate General for Disaster Management,
Department for International Relations, BUDAPEST

IRLANDE/IRELAND
Mr Willie O’DEA T.D., Minister for Defence, Dublin

ISLANDE/ICELAND
Mr. Bjorn BJARNASON, Minister of Justice and Ecclesiasical Affairs, Reykjavik, Iceland

ITALIE/ITALY
Mr. Pierluigi SODDU, Manager of Italian Civil Protection, Presidenza del Congilio dei Ministri, Department of Italian Civil Protection, ROME

LUXEMBOURG
Monsieur Jean-Marie HALSDORF, Ministre de l’Intérieur et de l’Aménagement du Territoire
Luxembourg

MONTENEGRO
Mr. Zoran BEGOVIC, Chief of emergency situations and civil security, Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Montenegro, PODGORICA

MALTE
Mr. Tonio BORG, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Justice and Home Affairs, Valletta

NORVEGE/NORWAY
Mr. Knut STORBERGET, Minister of Justice and the Police, Oslo

REPUBLIQUE DE SAINT-MARIN / REPUBLIC OF SAN MARINO
Mr. Giovanni GALASSI, Correspondant Permanent, Secrétaire Général, Centre Européen pour la Médecine des Catastrophes (CEMEC), SAN MARINO

FEDERATION DE RUSSIE/RUSSIAN FEDERATION
Mr. Sergey K. SHOYGU, Minister of Civil Defense, Emergencies, & Natural Disasters EMERCOM of RussiaMOSCOW
Mr.Yuri VOROBIEV, First Vice Minister, Ministry of Civil Defense, Emergencies, & Natural Disasters EMERCOM of Russia, MOSCOW

SLOVENIE/SLOVENIA
Mr. Karl Victor ERJAVEC, Minister of Defence, Ljubljana, Slovenia

BANQUE DE DEVELOPPEMENT DU CONSEIL DE L’EUROPE/COUNCIL OF EUROPE DEVELOPMENT BANK
Mr. Apolonio RUIZ LIGERO, Vice Gouverneur de la Banque de Développement du Conseil de l’Europe, PARIS

OCHA
Mr Sergio PIAZZI, Chief of External Relations, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, GENEVE

UNITAR
Mr. Marcel A. BOISARD, Executive Director, United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) NEW YORK
Mr. Francesco PISANO, Head, Institutional Relations, United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), GENEVA

ASSEMBLEE PARLEMENTAIRE DU CONSEIL DE L’EUROPE/PARLIAMENTARY ASSEMBLY OF THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE
Monsieur Cezar Florin PREDA, Vice Président de l’Assemblée Parlementaire du Conseil de l’Europe, Membre de la Commission de l’Environnement, de l’Agriculture et des Questions Territoriales, BUCAREST Roumanie

ORGANISATION MONDIALE DE LA SANTE : BUREAU REGIONAL POUR L’EUROPE/ WORLD HEALTH ORGANISATION: REGIONAL OFFICE FOR EUROPE
Dr. Gerald ROCKENSCHAUB, World Health Organisation, Regional Adviser, Disaster Preparedness and Response Program, COPENHAGEN

EXPERT
Monsieur Michel VIGNEAUX, Président de la Sous-Commission Programme, BORDEAUX

Appendix 2

DRAFT AGENDA

PROTECTING SOCIETIES FROM DISASTERS THROUGH PREPAREDNESS AND PREVENTION:
A POLITICAL PRIORITY

Chair of the Conference: Mr. Mohamed EL YAZGHI, Minister of Territorial Development, Water and the Environment of the Kingdom of Morocco

Vice-chairs of the Conference: Mr. László BORBÉLY, Delegate Minister for Public Works and Spatial Management of Romania

                Mr. Arnaldo CRUZ, Director General of Civil Protection, representing the Minister of the Interior of Portugal

8:30 - 9:15 Registration of participants

9:15 – 10:00 Opening ceremony and adoption of the agenda
document AP/CAT (2006) OJ 2 rev.9

          Welcome speeches by:

            o Mr. Mohamed EL YAZGHI, host Minister
            o Mrs. Kadiya ALJEDDY, Metropolitan District of Marrakech
            o Mrs. Gabriella BATTAINI-DRAGONI, Director General, Directorate General IV, Council of Europe

Morning

10:00 – 11:15 DISASTER PREVENTION, A POLITICAL CONCERN FOR EUROPE AND THE MEDITERRANEAN: EXPERIENCES AND NEEDS

          Co-Chair of the Session: Mr. Yuri BRASHNIKOV, Director of the Department of International Co-operation, EMERCOM of Russia

          · Mr. Arnaldo CRUZ, Director General of Civil Protection, Portugal

            The importance of European and Mediterranean co-operation in preventing disasters

          · Mr. László BORBÉLY, Delegate Minister for Public Works and Spatial Management of Romania : Planning as a tool for risk prevention

          · Mr. Faruk Nafiz ÖZAK, Minister of Public Works and Settlement of Turkey :
          Disaster risk reduction for seismic events: the experience of Turkey

          · Mr. Volodymyr KHOLOSHA, Deputy Minister of Emergency Management of Ukraine: Twenty years after the Chernobyl Accident: lessons learnt

          Discussion and short interventions

11:15 – 11:30 Break

11:30 – 12:45 DISASTER PREVENTION, A POLITICAL CONCERN FOR EUROPE AND THE MEDITERRANEAN: PRIORITIES FOR THE FUTURE

          Co-Chair of the Session: Mr. Paul MASSERON, Minister of the Interior of

                      the Principality of Monaco

          · Mrs. Rajae CHAFIL, Chair of the Agreement, Permanent Correspondent, Regional Inspector of Territorial Development and the Environment for the area Rabat-Sale, Zemmour-Zaers, Morocco, “Priorities in the framework of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA)”

            · Mr. Sálvano BRICEÑO, Director of the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction: “Implementing the Hyogo Framework for Action in Europe and the Mediterranean”

            · Mrs Pia BUCELLA, Director for Communication, Legal Affairs and Civil Protection, DG Environment, European Commission: “Priorities for Europe and the Mediterranean”

      Discussion and short interventions.

12:45 – 13:00 ADOPTION OF THE POLITICAL RESOLUTION

document: AP/CAT (2006) 1 rev.3 Draft Medium Term Plan 2007-2011

          document: AP/CAT (2006) 20 rev. Draft Resolution on priorities for action in the European and Mediterranean space

13:10 – 15:00 Lunch

Afternoon

15:00 – 16:00 BUILDING A CULTURE OF RISK THROUGH EDUCATION

          Co-Chair of the Session: Mr. Angel CHAKAROV, Deputy Minister, Ministry of State Policy of Disasters and Accidents, Bulgaria

              · Mr. Paul MASSERON, Minister of the Interior of the Principality of Monaco
              “Risk prevention in schools in the Principality of Monaco”

              · Mr. Francisco Javier VELAZQUEZ LOPEZ, Director General of Civil Protection and Emergencies, Ministry of the Interior, Spain “Education and training on disaster prevention: new challenges and trends”

              · Mr. Badaoui ROUHBAN, Head, Department for Disaster Prevention, UNESCO: “Education to risks as an element of education to sustainable development: the work ahead”

              · Mr. Christos KYRIAKIDES, Commissioner of Civil Defence, Cyprus:
              “New technologies at the service of risk awareness in schools”

16:00 – 16:15 ADOPTION OF THE RECOMMENDATION

          Document: AP/CAT (2006) 33 rev. Draft Recommendation on disaster risk reduction through education at school

16:15 – 16:30 Break

16:30 – 17:45 RISK PREVENTION AT LOCAL AND REGIONAL LEVELS

          Co-Chair of the Session: Madame Monique DE KNOP, representing the Minister of the Interior of Belgium, Présidente du Comité de Direction, Service Public Fédéral Intérieur, Belgique

          · Mr. Valery AKIMOV, Director of the Centre of Strategic Studies of EMERCOM of Russia, Ministry for Emergency Situations, “The role of local and regional authorities in risk reduction”

          · Mr. Aram TANANYAN, Major General, Deputy Director of the Rescue Service of Armenia, “The role of local and regional authorities in disaster reduction in the Republic of Armenia”

          · Mr. Ian MICALLEF, President of the Chamber for Local Authorities of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe: “The role of local and regional authorities in preventing and planning for risks and in dealing with emergency situations: creating the necessary partnerships”

          · Mr. Jan MANS, President of the European Forum for Local and Regional Disaster Management: “Making local authorities conscious of risks”

Discussion and short interventions.

17:45 – 18:00 ADOPTION OF THE RECOMMENDATION

          document: AP/CAT (2006) 24 rev.2 Draft Recommendation on local and regional authorities and disaster prevention

18:00 – 18:15 CLOSING CEREMONY

Appendix 3

Resolution on priorities for action in the field of disaster reduction in the European and Mediterranean space

The Ministers,

A. Warmly thank the government of Morocco for the excellent preparation and hosting of the 11th Ministerial Session of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA).

B. Express their concern for the increased effect that natural disasters and technological accidents have had both on the world’s population and its economy since they last met in the Republic of San Marino in December 2003 and they extend their sincere condolences and sympathy to the communities affected by disasters.

C. Note that people and governments are increasingly alarmed by the extent of disasters and their frequency over recent years and they wish to put emphasis on prevention, preparedness and early warning of populations and efficient management of emergencies.

D. Recall the results of their 9th and 10th Ministerial Sessions held respectively in Bandol (France) in October 2002 and the Republic of San Marino in December 2003, and express satisfaction as to the implementation of their 2002-2006 Medium Term Plan and they wish to adapt the future work of the Partial Agreement to world priorities, at the same time focusing on a limited number of issues to obtain increased efficiency with the available resources.

E. Welcome the Declarations and proposals of the World Conference on Disaster Reduction held in Kobe, Japan in January 2005 and in particular the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015: Building the Resilience of Nations and Communities to Disasters, as useful guidance to meet the challenges posed by disasters, aiming to reduce risks and the vulnerability of societies through precise practical actions.

F. Welcome the commitment expressed by the Heads of State of Government of the member states of the Council of Europe, meeting in Warsaw in May 2005 at their Third Summit, to strengthen the security of European citizens and their request that, among its principal tasks, the Council of Europe should further develop and support integrated policies in the field of prevention and management of natural disasters in a sustainable development perspective.

G. Welcome the conclusions of the Third International Conference on Early Warning held in Bonn, Germany, on 27-29 March 2006 and express their commitment to reinforce early warning systems at national and international levels.

H. Take note with interest of the conclusions of the International Conference “Twenty years after the Chernobyl accident: future outlook”, held in Kyiv on 24-26 April 2006.

RESOLVE to:

1. Promote that disaster reduction, as a fundamental element of sustainable development, becomes a national and local priority, inter alia by strengthening national mechanisms, the integration of risk reduction in development and planning policies and the setting up and reinforcement where necessary of early warning systems.

2. Implement the priorities for action laid down in the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015 in the European and Mediterranean space, reinforcing as appropriate the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) as a regional mechanism of coordinated action in disaster reduction.

3. Invite European and Mediterranean states which are not part of the Partial Agreement to join this co-operation structure so as to create coherent European and Mediterranean synergy.

4. Support an increased collaboration with the European Union, the United Nations and other appropriate organisations concerned with disaster reduction and relief.

5. Adopt the Medium Term Plan 2007-2011 (document AP/CAT (2006) 01 rev. 3) of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) as guidelines for priority action in this field over the next five years.

6. Instruct the Committee of Permanent Correspondents of the Agreement to follow the implementation of the Medium Term Plan, adapting it as required to new circumstances and making proposals and recommendations to improve its effectiveness;

7. Instruct the network of twenty-six Euro-Mediterranean Specialised Centres of the Agreement to support, in their respective spheres of competence, the implementation of the priorities set in the Medium Term Plan, working in a cross-sectional manner, pooling their expertise in the accomplishment of sound, coordinated programmes.

Furthermore REQUEST

The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe to support as appropriate the implementation
of the Medium Term Plan 2007-2011 of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) and to encourage the member states of the Council of Europe which are not party to the Partial Agreement to consider joining this intergovernmental co-operation framework.

MEDIUM TERM PLAN
2007–2011

of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA)

The present Medium Term Plan (2007-2011) has been prepared by the Executive Secretariat based on work developed by the Agreement since its creation, the Medium Term Plan 2002-2006, previous decisions of Ministerial Sessions and of the Committee of Permanent Correspondents, priorities set by Heads of State and Government of the Member states of the Council of Europe and (at world level) by the Kobe World Conference on Disaster Reduction (2005) and on comments received by members of the Committee of Permanent Correspondents.

I. PREAMBLE

Disasters not only cause severe human loss and suffering but also impede development by their dramatic economic and social effects. The Statute of the Council of Europe (London, 1949) lists in its Article 1 as one of the aims of the organisation to “facilitate the economic and social progress” of its member states. This aim shall be pursued “by agreements and common action in ...... scientific, legal and administrative matters”.

It is in this scope that the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe decided in 1987 to adopt the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) which establishes a co-operation group for the prevention of, protection against and organisation of relief in major natural and technological disasters (Resolution R (87) 2).

The main aim of the Agreement is thus to promote co-operation on prevention, protection and relief in connection with major disasters, reducing their effects on people and on the economy through appropriate policies and the implementation of adequate technical solutions.

In addition to Council of Europe member states, the Agreement is open to states which are not member states of the Council of Europe, particularly in the Mediterranean, thus enhancing regional co-operation by adopting common approaches with European neighbours with regard to disaster reduction issues.

In the last nineteen years the Agreement has carried out important work in the field of risk prevention and management and in aid to decision making in emergency situations, having developed appropriate research, training, awareness and information programmes. At the same time it has promoted the creation of an efficient network of specialised Euro-Mediterranean Centres. This network has facilitated practical contributions from signatory states through the implementation of precise programmes.

The United Nations Millennium Declaration adopted by its General Assembly in September 2000 noted that children and all civilian populations that suffer disproportionately the consequences of natural disasters should be given every assistance and protection so that they can resume normal life as soon as possible. The Heads of State and Government resolved to strengthen the protection of civilians in complex emergencies and to foster international co-operation, including burden sharing in the coordination of humanitarian assistance to all refugees and displaced persons.

The Johannesburg World Summit on Sustainable Development (September 2002) noted that natural disasters are more frequent and more devastating than in the past. The Summit approved an Action Plan in which states were encouraged to adopt “an integrated, multi-hazard, inclusive approach to address vulnerability, risk assessment and disaster management, including prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery, is an essential element of a safer world in the twenty-first century”.

Specific action in the field of major hazards has been pursued, at world level, mainly in the framework of the United Nations’ International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR). This organisation prepared the World Conference on Disaster Reduction, held from 18 to 22 January 2005 in Kobe (Hyogo, Japan), in which an ambitious set of objectives was set for future action, namely the “Framework for Action 2005-2015 : Building the resilience of nations and communities to disasters”, (more often referred to as the “Hyogo Framework for Action”).

The Hyogo Framework for Action sets world priorities by identifying specific activities that may result in reducing the exposure of people to natural disasters and technological accidents and in improving risk assessment and disaster management. These priorities also help implement relevant provisions of the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation of the World summit on Sustainable Development.

At their Third Summit held in Warsaw (May 2005), the Heads of State and Government of the member states of the Council of Europe outlined an action plan listing the principle tasks of the Council of Europe for the coming years (chapter “Strengthening the security of European Citizens”):

“We are committed to improving the quality of life for citizens. The Council of Europe shall therefore, on the basis of the existing instruments, further develop and support integrated policies in the fields of environment, landscape, spatial planning and prevention and management of natural disasters, in a sustainable development perspective.”

In the context of the above political framework, the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) stands as a unique structure for regional co-operation between the states of the Northern and Southern Mediterranean, Western, Central and Eastern Europe. The Agreement will encourage its member states to actively participate on a regional scale in undertaking international efforts aiming to reduce risks, to minimize vulnerability and to increase sustainability of the nations and communities in support of sustainable development.

The new political framework set up by the Third Summit of the Heads of State and Government of the member states of the Council of Europe and, at world level, by the Kobe World Conference on Disaster Reduction, invites to adapt the action of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement to the new challenges and priorities identified, also maintaining activities which have proven their value.

II. GUIDELINES OF THE MEDIUM TERM PLAN

The emphasis is set on prevention and rapid response. The following guidelines have been used for the elaboration of proposals contained in this Medium Term Plan.

      Ø The Agreement will enhance its political dimension, insuring that disaster risk reduction becomes a national and political priority with a strong institutional basis for implementation. Member states of the Agreement are expected to modify policies, update and improve laws and practice to better integrate disaster risk reduction into their current action and into their development policies. The Agreement will have the ambition to include risk perspectives in national and regional sustainable development strategies and action.

      Ø The Agreement, as an instrument of co-operation among its member states, will streamline its activities with other Council of Europe political priorities in the social and sustainable development fields, including the actions of the Council of Europe Development Bank and those in the field of environment protection, the European Conference of Ministers in charge of Spatial Planning, the local development projects in South-East Europe and the Caucasus as well as those of the Parliamentary Assembly and the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe.

      Ø Furthermore, the Agreement will strengthen synergies with other international organisations working in major risks, so as to avoid overlap and improve common efficiency.

      Ø Privileged partners at European level will be the European Union, the European Space Agency and the European Environment Agency among other European institutions. Thus the fourth Medium Term Plan will be particularly attentive to European Union action and guidelines regarding security in the field of natural and technological risks, so as to make better use of existing synergies. Collaboration of the Executive Secretariat with the European Commission will be reinforced, in particular with the civil protection and research units and further coordination programmes and objectives will be sought.

      Ø Special attention will be paid to the relevant work of the pertinent specialised United Nations’ Agencies and bodies (including OCHA, ISDR, UNESCO, UNITAR, WHO, ILO, IAEA, WMO), the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and the International Civil Defence Organisation. In this context the Agreement’s fourth Medium Term Plan 2007-2011 has been drawn up searching coherence with the main priorities identified in the Hyogo Framework for Action, adapted as appropriate to the characteristics of the European and the Mediterranean space.

      Ø In the period 2007-2011, the Agreement will better target its action, increasing its efficiency by focusing on a limited number of issues in line with the priorities defined. The activities conducted under the Agreement will concentrate on:

          o Policy, legislative and institutional aspects of risk reduction
          o Training, education and information: building a culture of risk reduction
          o Research aimed at identifying, assessing and monitoring risks and their impact and enhancing early warning systems
          o Specific programmes aimed at reducing the underlying risk factors
          o Effective response through service activity: European Warning System, psychological assistance to victims.

      Ø An enlargement of the Agreement to the member states of the Council of Europe and Mediterranean countries which are not yet member states of the Agreement is to be promoted so as to improve its institutional, political and budgetary dimensions and enable the Agreement to play a fundamental role as a regional instrument for implementation of the Hyogo Framework of Action.

      Ø The network of Specialised Centres of the Agreement is to be reinforced and enlarged as necessary relying on the technical and scientific capabilities of the Centres to conduct specific Agreement activities and focusing more their action on the priorities set in this Medium Term Plan.

      Ø The Agreement will continue to be financed by contributions from states parties to the Agreement as it is statutorily provided for. Special programmes or coordinated actions will be proposed for financing by voluntary contributions if the states so wish, enabling the Agreement to be more actively present in some fields.

III. PRIORITIES FOR ACTION

III.1. POLICY, LEGISLATIVE AND INSTITUTIONAL ASPECTS

Policy

The European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) will continue to act as an instrument and forum of co-operation among its member states and a political and technical reference for its observer states. It will serve as a platform to exchange information on member states’ protection, prevention and relief organisation policies, facilitating contacts, promoting best practices, exchanging experiences and know-how, supporting where necessary and possible the improvement of risk prevention policies. It will encourage states to develop and improve as appropriate their policy, legislative and institutional frameworks for disaster risk reduction. The role of the Committee of Permanent Correspondents is to be reinforced in this context.

One of the aspects to be promoted in the context of the Agreement will be the need for states to make appropriate financial provisions for disaster reduction, as present resources devoted to this field fall short of needs.

Legislative aspects

Particular attention will be devoted to the analysis of the legislation of member states on major hazards and the management of emergency situations. Comparative studies will be continued, aiming at identifying legal texts and procedures that have proven particularly useful and proposals and recommendations will be made in view of providing examples for possible standard setting activities.

The purpose of this work is to promote the improvement and update of national legislations in disaster reduction and emergency management areas, bringing national legislations closer to international principles and norms accepted within the scope of the Agreement and of the Kobe conference. The comparative study already carried out by the Agreement could be used as a basis for the elaboration of an adequate model legal framework on risk reduction which may be used as a source of inspiration for each State, taking into account its situation and needs.

Institutional aspects

Institutional frameworks for disaster risk reduction will be analysed, with an emphasis on interministerial processes and structures, on the promotion of national platforms for coordination of response and prevention and on the share of responsibilities among different actors whilst strengthening the role of local and regional authorities and the collaboration of the private sector in dealing with disaster prevention and risk reduction.

Special attention will be paid in this context to the role of spatial planning in disaster prevention and to the inclusion of security considerations in development projects.

III.2. BUILDING A CULTURE OF RISK REDUCTION

Information exchange

The Agreement will continue to promote and improve dialogue and co-operation among scientists and practitioners working on disaster risk reduction, including the setting up of clearing house mechanisms and/or information sharing systems for the exchange of information on good practices, efficient risk reduction technologies and lessons learned on policies, plans and means. Local and regional authorities and other relevant actors will be invited to actively participate in this exchange of experiences. The web site of the Agreement will play a special role in this context.

Particular attention will be devoted to promoting the use of advanced communication and space-based technologies for risk management, including, in co-operation with relevant programmes and activities of the European Space Agency and of the United Nations, such as UNOSAT, the UNITAR operational satellite applications programme.

Training

The Agreement will promote the identification of knowledge requirements in jobs necessary for risk and emergency management and the type of professional profile sought by potential employers in the field, both in the public and private sectors.

In this context it will continue to encourage and support the Euro-Mediterranean masters in the field of risk management as well as the preparation of a post-graduate diploma with a Euro-Mediterranean label. Disaster medicine and psychological aid in emergency situations will also be promoted.

The Agreement will also contribute to the organisation of training courses for relief specialists, central, regional or local government officials, teachers and development planners, on aspects such as disaster prevention, relief management and post-disaster measures.

Education

The Agreement will continue to promote the elaboration, dissemination and use of educational materials for the school community on attitudes to be adopted before, during and after a disaster, contributing to the design of programmes, activities and multi-media tools which will permit teachers and students to learn how to minimise the effects of hazards. Pilot projects will be launched in different member states so they may be repeated and promoted at national level. Successful experiences in certain countries of the Agreement will be disseminated to other interested countries, together with their communication materials.

Awareness

The Agreement will continue to prepare and promote publications, multi-media information and educational material aimed at the general public on risk reduction, trying also to engage the media to stimulate public awareness on risks and how best to prepare for disasters and how to react in emergency situations. It will play an active role in the preparation and implementation of information campaigns, collaborating as appropriate with other interested organisations.

III.3. SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNICAL CO-OPERATION: RESEARCH, RISK ASSESSMENT, EARLY
WARNING AND REDUCTION OF UNDERLYING RISK FACTORS

Through its national Correspondents and network of specialised Centres, the Agreement will promote scientific and technical co-operation among its member and observer states, as well as with appropriate international organisations, on a number of key issues:

Risk assessment and mapping

The Agreement will develop the collection and analysis of information on risks in an appropriate format, including the identification of indicators, the elaboration of multi-hazard maps and the assessment of the vulnerability of populations and economy to natural and technological hazards. The Agreement will promote activities on risks associated with the specific expertise of each of its Centres, as well as promoting the exchange of experiences and the implementation of common Euro-Mediterranean programmes on sciences related to risk assessment and monitoring.

The Agreement will also encourage the development of standardised and user-friendly technologies for disaster risk mapping so they may be taken into account in spatial planning and in major urban or industrial developments.

Moreover the Agreement will foster the record, analysis and dissemination of disaster occurrence, as well as the assessment of impacts and losses. Member states will be invited to report on events of particular significance, as well as on the measures taken.

Early Warning development

The Agreement will promote the development of early warning systems, well adapted to target audiences, and will work, inter alia, with local authorities towards the harmonisation of signals and alarms in the Agreement’s area so that warnings are easily understandable by all populations at risk, resident, temporary visitors or tourists.

Particular attention will be paid to promoting the establishment and improvement of information systems (based on vulnerability data) connected to early warning and to the promotion of information tools that may help decision making in emergency situations.

Prevention: reducing vulnerability

The Agreement will continue to promote activities aimed at reducing risks and vulnerability of populations, by encouraging more sound development practices, improved land-use and encouraging a safer and more sustainable management of ecosystems. This includes in particular the promotion of more stringent building codes, building design and innovative construction techniques in seismic areas and safer land-use practices in areas vulnerable to marine risks, landslides or floods. The Agreement will also promote the retrofitting of schools, hospitals and public buildings so they become more resistant to risks.

The Agreement will also contribute to the analysis of the role of the environment and environmental management in disaster risk reduction, co-operating as appropriate with existing initiatives at regional and world levels.

With regard to technological hazards, the Agreement will continue promoting safer standards in the transport and dumping of dangerous substances and for nuclear and industrial plants. The Agreement will support the elaboration of standardised guides on the control of industrial risks.

III.4. PREPAREDNESS AND EFFECTIVE RESPONSE THROUGH SERVICE ACTIVITIES

Co-operation in emergency situations

The Agreement will promote a coordinated regional approach in operational mechanisms and communication systems aiming to prepare for and to ensure effective response in transboundary disasters (particularly floods) and in situations which exceed national capacities (particularly earthquakes) in line with internationally agreed methodology, guidelines and check lists. In this context, the Agreement will continue its support to both the European Warning System maintained by the Euro-Mediterranean Seismological Centre, France and to the EXTREMUM rapid assessment of the effects of disasters maintained by EMERCOM of Russia.

Psychological aid

In co-operation with professional associations, the Agreement will promote the establishment of networks of specialists with the capacity to act in emergency situations or to train local psychologists in dealing with disaster victims, in particular children and other vulnerable groups. The Agreement will also support the development of training on “psychological aid to disaster victims” for psychologists from member states of the Agreement or from observer states.

Appendix 4

Recommendation on disaster risk reduction through education at school

The Ministers,

A. Note that the effect of disasters can be reduced if people are aware of disaster risks, prepare for them and know how to act in emergency situations.

B. Are aware that the school and other educational structures are a very appropriate environment to promote citizens’ education on disaster reduction given its role in people’s education. They recognise that children and adolescents are more receptive to this type of learning than other population segments and that they can thus convey messages of safety and good practice to their parents and family.

C. Believe that education to risk reduction should be an important part of national strategies and campaigns on education for sustainable development carried out in the framework of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development.

D. Note that the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) has always given priority to initiatives for the development of programmes on awareness and education to risk, which are fundamental elements of a culture on risk that lead to prevention and to the resilience of communities. In this context they note with satisfaction the progress made in the construction of the Agreement’s website on education to risks (Be-Safe-Net) and the pilot projects and experiences on this topic carried out in several states which may be extended to all the member states of the Agreement.

E. Wish to contribute,

    · with regard to the Agreement, to the implementation of chapter 3 of the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015 “Use knowledge, innovation and education to build a culture of safety and resilience at all levels”, and
    · with regard to European states, to the implementation of the Strategy for Education for Sustainable Development of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe.

F. Welcome the World Disaster Reduction Campaign (2006-2007) of the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) launched in co-operation with UNESCO under the theme “Disaster Risk Reduction Begins at School” and express their support for a firm involvement of the Agreement and its activities in the campaign. In this context they take note of the conclusions of the International Congress on Education and Training on Disaster Prevention (Madrid, 26-28 September 2006).

RECOMMEND that member states of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement
(EUR-OPA):

I. Examine in detail at national level their programmes on risk education at school level to assess whether they provide the knowledge and practice needed by children to be safe from disaster risks.

II. Consider drafting and implementing a national strategy on education for disaster reduction through the collaborative effort of different Ministers and experts in a multi-stakeholders platform, taking into account as appropriate, international recommendations, experiences and standards.

In the drafting and implementation of national strategies, member states are in particular recommended to:

1. Integrate disaster risk reduction into all relevant subjects, programmes and courses at school and provide specific subject programmes, courses and practical activities on risk reduction, both in formal school curricula and in vocational or extra-curricula activities.

2. Promote that knowledge transmitted on disaster risk reduction covers all risks possibly incurred by children and in particular:

      · the causes, the origin and the effects of disasters (both natural and technological hazards)
      · the methods of protecting people by planning, preparedness and prevention
      · the type of life-saving behaviour in case of emergency.

Ensure that such knowledge does not remain purely theoretical but that it also involves preparedness, action and appropriate practical exercises.

3. Encourage the whole school community to participate actively, at all levels, in disaster reduction, focusing on the particular risks of each school and its surrounding community and fostering dialogue, collaboration and involvement of professionals (i.e. firemen or civil protection personnel), local authorities and risk experts. In this context, encourage in particular parents to be involved in education for disaster risk reduction so as to raise their own awareness of risk and to keep themselves informed on the correct behaviour to adopt in an emergency situation.

4. Promote teacher training in disaster risk reduction by putting at their disposal the necessary information, courses and incentives.

5. Promote the elaboration and exchange of relevant educational materials such as films and other visual aids, pedagogic and didactic publications, manuals and brochures, case studies and other suitable educational tools, using as appropriate new information technology and experiences from other schools or countries.

6. Promote research and innovation on education for disaster reduction, supporting pilot projects in schools and publishing and extending positive experiences.

7. Support international co-operation on education for disaster reduction, in particular through the work of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA), UNESCO, ISDR and other fora.

8. Encourage educational experiences on disaster reduction at schools to also be used to assess the safety of school buildings against major hazards, drawing the attention of authorities to the need for making, where necessary, the school safer for children and the school community.

9. Encourage the appropriate bodies to provide adequate financial means to implement the above measures by the development or reinforcement of appropriate mechanisms.

Furthermore the Ministers RECOMMEND that member states and observer states inform the Committee of Permanent Correspondents of the Agreement by the end of 2007 of the measures taken to implement the above recommendations.

Appendix 5

Recommendation on local and regional authorities preventing disasters and facing emergencies

The Ministers,

A. Note that disaster risk reduction is a responsibility of all societies which requires the commitment and joint effort of national, regional and local authorities.

B. Recognise that many of the competencies of regional and local authorities in the following fields:

        · spatial planning
        · licensing and monitoring of potential hazardous industrial activities
        · building of public facilities and housing
        · fire-fighting
        · transport
        · health
        · environment
        · water management
        · education, etc.

are of fundamental importance in risk management, in providing early warning and in effective rapid response in case of emergencies.

C. Note that local authorities, because of their proximity to the citizen, are often the first to be confronted with disasters and emergency situations so that the preventive measures taken previous to an event and their response during the first hours of an emergency are crucial to minimise loss of lives and property.

D. Are aware that, in spite of this important role, local authorities often lack financial resources, are not always provided with the necessary information and in some cases, do not have sufficient technical capacity to confront emergency situations of a certain dimension and consequently they may not be well prepared to face major disasters.

E. Welcome:

i. the renewed interest of local and regional authorities to become more actively involved in risk prevention and management, as illustrated by the work of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe:

    · the “Slavutych Appeal” launched in March 2006 as a conclusion of the Conference “Chernobyl: Twenty years after. Local and regional authorities facing catastrophes”
    · Recommendation 169 (2005) on major oil spills: the role of local authorities
    · Recommendation 168 (2005) on natural and industrial disasters: local authorities facing emergencies
    · Recommendation 108 (2002) on local authorities confronting natural disasters and emergencies
    · Recommendation 42 (1998) on nuclear safety and local regional democracy

ii. the creation, under the aegis of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe, of the European Forum on Local and Regional Disaster Management.

F. Express their wish and commitment to closely cooperate and coordinate as befitting with local and regional authorities in all relevant fields of risk prevention and management, including institutional and legal reinforcement, information exchange, school education and citizens’ awareness, risk and vulnerability assessment and monitoring, early warning, public information in emergency situations, making public buildings, housing and infrastructures more resistant to disasters, elaboration and implementation of contingency plans, as well as emergency management, response and recovery operations, reconstruction financing and any other key issue that may contribute to making communities more resilient to natural disasters and technological accidents.

RECOMMEND that member states of the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement
(EUR-OPA):

1. Examine at national level appropriate legal and administrative procedures relative to disaster risk reduction and management of emergency situations to assess whether the role of local and regional authorities is adequately considered, with a view to improving if necessary, the coordination of national, regional and local authorities in their respective fields of competence.

2. Encourage and facilitate the implication of local and regional authorities in disaster reduction, in particular by involving them where appropriate in risk assessment and monitoring, elaboration of contingency plans and development and maintenance of early warning systems; in this sense adopt a multi-authority approach in preventive action and in emergency management.

3. Provide local and regional authorities with all the necessary information they require to make their communities safe and able to respond to natural and industrial disasters, both as a matter of routine and in a time of crisis.

4. Promote community-based risk education and awareness in co-operation and partnership with local and regional authorities.

5. Provide appropriate financial support and incentives to local and regional authorities to carry out the necessary disaster risk reduction activities on matters within their competence.

Furthermore, the Ministers RECOMMEND local and regional authorities to:

6. be attentive to risk aspects in spatial planning decisions, particularly in the location of infrastructures and houses, services and industry in areas prone to flooding, landslides, avalanches, marine risks, industrial risks, seismic risks or other major hazards, also ensuring that new infrastructures do not increase the vulnerability to existing risks;

7. ensure, in areas of seismic risk, that safe building codes are implemented and that the safety of old buildings is improved, particularly those used for schools, hospitals or other public services, taking into account as appropriate the local risk cultures;

8. re-evaluate, as necessary, the industrial risks of activities under their responsibility, especially when operation permits were granted a long time ago when risk awareness was far more limited or wherever subsequent development decisions have resulted in causing industries which were once isolated to now be surrounded by residential areas;

9. prepare risk maps of areas under their responsibility in collaboration as necessary with governmental authorities, scientists and risk experts, also identifying historical records of disasters or major events caused by natural hazards;

10. reinforce, where appropriate, human resource capacities at local or regional levels in the field of risk assessment and effective response to disasters developing the appropriate capacity building programmes which would target elected officials and professionals as well as community-based volunteers;

11. protect vulnerable cultural and environmental assets, inter alia by assessing the vulnerability of built cultural heritage and historical settings to major risks, taking appropriate prevention measures and by ensuring that valuable environmental areas including water courses are safe from industrial pollution that may be caused by industrial or mining accidents;

12. participate, as appropriate, in the development of early warning systems, establishing the necessary surveillance of hazards likely to affect the territory under their responsibility and reinforcing alarm systems and other means of alert and information aimed at the local population;

13. prepare local contingency plans and programmes, in coordination with national and regional authorities, and carry out the necessary exercises while executing these plans, involving in particular schools and vulnerable population groups;

14. promote risk education in schools and higher education institutions, paying special attention to local risk and the conduct to be observed in emergency situations; promote the training in schools of teachers with special responsibility in risk management; enhance local knowledge in risk and favour its transmission;

15. promote citizen participation and involvement in risk issues, with special emphasis on local risks, enhance community-based volunteering in risk related activities;

16. engage in making schools, hospitals and other appropriate public buildings “safe from disaster”, also including the strengthening of their capacity to work and host people in emergency situations;

17. promote sustainable forestry and sound water course management so as to minimise risks associated to floods or landslides which might have more damaging effects due to environmental degradation; restore, where appropriate, deforested areas;

18. set up efficient response mechanisms and well trained teams to cope with disaster emergencies, coordinating as appropriate with other local and regional authorities, with government civil protection authorities and with community based organisations engaged in disaster management;

19. promote the collaboration and sharing of resources in risk management issues with other neighbouring communities (i.e. pooling of services and know-how, joint education programmes, coordinated emergency and response means, etc.);

20. promote that appropriate information is provided to the public on risks, particularly in emergency situations, taking into account the citizens’ right to be informed on their safety.

The Ministers invite the member states of the Council of Europe which are not party to the European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA), to examine the above recommendations and to use them as a source of inspiration for their policy and practice.

Note 1 This document has been classified restricted at the date of issue. Unless the Committee of Ministers decides otherwise, it will be declassified according to the rules set up in Resolution Res(2001)6 on access to Council of Europe documents.


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