Charalambos Alexandrou, director of the Forestry Department and president of the Cyprus Forest Association, has highlighted the importance of EU funding to help protect the Cyprus environment.
In an interview with Philenews, Alexandrou also spoke of the important role volunteers play in environmental issues.
The Cyprus Forest Association is a non-governmental organisation that works with the Forestry Department whose director is the ex-officio chairman of the NGO. Actions and activities that fall outside the jurisdiction of the Forestry Department are implemented by the association, he said.
Many of the programmes both of the Forestry Department and of the Cyprus Forest Association are implemented through EU funding programmes. As he explained, it is a way of financing some of the daily work of the department and the programmes are implemented in cooperation with a number of agencies and NGOs.
These are co-financed programmes with financing from various EU funds. Moreover, there is an EU Solidarity Fund from which funds were taken after the devastating fires in Solia and Argaka.
Some of the projects financed with EU money is the restoration of the natural habitats in Madari and Rizoelia and programmes to protect birds.
At the moment, seven co-financed programmes are underway, including one to protect the cedar, an information campaign on the Troodos and a programme to protect the Bonelli eagle.