Ukraine has joined the LIFE environmental program, within which it will be able to receive resources and funding to eliminate the long-term consequences of Russian aggression, as well as to restore the environment in general.
The corresponding document was signed in Kyiv by Minister of Environment Protection and Natural Resources of Ukraine Ruslan Strelets and EU Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginius Sinkevičius, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.
“Today is a very important day for the entire environmental sphere of our country. Ukraine received from European Union great support and tremendous opportunities for nature restoration – we signed an agreement to participate in the LIFE program. This means that from now on our state will have appropriate funding to restore the environment, which is mercilessly harmed by the Russian Federation,” the Ukrainian minister said.
According to him, LIFE is the only EU program dedicated exclusively to nature conservation and climate action. Over 30 years, more than 5,600 projects have been successfully implemented within the framework of the European Union and beyond its borders. The program budget for 2021-2027 is 5.43 billion euros, which corresponds to 0.48% of the total EU budget.
Strelets specified that for Ukraine, the implementation of projects within the framework of the LIFE program will become an effective tool in the field of environmental protection and reconstruction in the post-war period. In particular, about 15 ideas are already being considered related to the restoration of rivers, the development of the reserve fund, as well as the cleanup of territories littered by Russian invaders.
“With joining the LIFE family of 27 member countries, we can now use part of its funds to develop our environment and cover those needs for which we could not spend budget funds due to complex Ukrainian legislation. Russian aggression has made partnership within the framework of the program even more important and a priority for us,” added the head of the Ministry of the Environment.
As reported, 254 cases of ecocide have now been confirmed and about 2,000 facts of the destruction of the Ukrainian environment as a result of the military aggression of the Russian Federation have been identified.