Romania

Romania: Evaluation meeting of the activity of the National Committee for Emergencies and the General Inspectorate for Emergencies

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Evaluation and Lessons Learned
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Posted
Originally published
The situations created by last year's floods represent a lesson for the Government and it will be used so that the authorities cannot be taken by surprise, in case of new floods emergence, Prime Minister Calin Popescu - Tariceanu has stated, on the National Committee for Emergencies' evaluation meeting.

" We drew conclusions from last year's lesson. We do not want to take circumstantial actions anymore. The Government will start programs for emergencies prevention. It is important to prepare, to finance and put these programs in practice. We have to invest in equipment, in order to confer to the intervention forces the necessary capacity", Prime Minister has stated.

Today, the Head of the Executive has launched an appeal to Ministers, prefects and mayors to lay stress on prevention, showing that a disaster is easier to be prevented than to be controlled. He has thanked the intervention forces and the Ministries for the way they acted during the 2005 floods." I am convinced that, if dedicated people who feel they have responsibilities to defend their fellow citizens' life and to prevent such events did not exist, the exceptional situations such as those of 2005 would be forgotten".

The serious effects of last year's floods - loss of human lives and assets - were determined by the lack of a unitary system, as well as the lack of intervention strategy in case of emergency situations.

In 2005, the Executive has reformed the manner of action in the emergency situations' management, Prime Minister Tariceanu has showed and the measures envisaged for the next period will concentrate on four action directions:

Coherence in action

Prime Minister has showed that the Government has practically created a new National System for Emergencies' Management, given the fact that in 2005, there were registered over 37.000 emergencies.

"The whole intervention system had to be balanced and articulated in order to assure the management of these exceptional situations", Prime Minister has stated. He has added that Romania should use the experience of other countries that have performing systems for these situations' management. In this respect, professional intervention forces represent a priority for the authorities so that the preparation level of the intervention personnel should be at the European level.

Rally

The Government has proved in 2005 that it has the capacity to rally for the floods' effects limitation, and to find the necessary resources for humanitarian aids, rapid intervention and houses and infrastructure's reconstruction, Prime Minister has stated. " The sum allotted to these actions exceeded 23.500 billion ROL", Prime Minister has stated. He has shown that the prevention of some emergencies, such as the floods is more important than the rally for the fight and limitation of their effects: "From the rally perspective, the main lesson that we have to learn is the prevention. We do not have to wait the floods' wave in order to evacuate people from their houses".

Prevention

The Government has introduced a real reform in the disasters' management that requires a radical change of the authorities' behavior.

Over the next period, the authorities' actions will concentrate on the modernization of the defense works against floods, and especially on their extension.

"On the last meeting, the Government has approved the contracting of a credit amounting to 1, 6 billion EUR in order to finance some works on the reconstruction and extension of the defense infrastructure against floods", Prime Minister Calin Popescu - Tariceanu has stated.

The completion and renewal of the intervention forces' equipment represent a priority for the Government, Prime Minister has added.

The thematic controls performed last year by the Ministry of Administration and Interior, the Ministry of Environment and Waters' Management and the Ministry of Agriculture, Forests and Rural Development will continue this year too, because "actions such as Gaterul(sawmill), Iazul (pond)and Balastiera(ballast) pointed out the faulty way in which these issues were treated", Prime Minister has stated.

Also, in 2006, there will be developed a program on the planting of 60.000 forest hectares.

Society's involvement

The 2005 floods proved that the authorities cannot help people if they are not supported by local communities. "In 2005, there were real solidarity demonstrations: in the account opened by SGG, there were gathered 67 billion ROL from donations, the civil society proved its solidarity, the mass media organized broadcasts for donations collection", Prime Minister has stated.

The priority actions over the next period aim at continuing the investment for the protection against floods and improvement of the informational system of emergencies' management. "An important objective for the necessary investment coverage is the resources attraction. The projects unfolded with the World Bank and the European Investment Bank represent a good beginning", Prime Minister has stated.

The Head of the Executive requested the Ministers of Environment, Administration and Interior, and Agriculture to complete and consolidate the early warning systems. The Ministry of Agriculture will continue the land improvements program. "If the land improvements works had been functional, the floods' effects in agriculture would have been diminished", the Head of the Executive has stated.

Other expressed request of the Head of the Government addressed the Ministry of Environment: severe controls on the observance of environment protection norms and sanction of some environment norms' infringements.