Greece gets European aid to fight wildfires – Times of India

ATHENS: The first of more than 200 firefighters from six European countries who will help their Greek allies fight wildfires have arrived. Athens,
28 Romanian firefighters were welcomed on Saturday Climate crisis and civil defense Minister Christos Stylianides and lead Greece‘s fire service,
“Romania is delighted to engage in a pre-positioning program with a special fire force,” said Colonel Alexandru-Adrian Siसिलिकi, leader of the Romanian team. “We have previous experience here in Greece.”
The Romanians, along with other countries including Russia and Turkey, helped Greece fight a widespread wildfire in August 2021 that ravaged the entire country and the northern part of Greece’s second largest island, Evia, as well as the southern Peloponnese peninsula. destroyed it.
This year, the EU has established a “pre-positioning pilot project”, designed to lead to a sustainable Europe-wide cooperation programme.
“We are ramping up preparedness for the wildfire season in Europe. As of today, +200[firefighters]from across Europe will be strategically positioned in Greece to keep[the fires]out of control, before they become national Join forces.” Stylianides’ successor as European commissioner for crisis management tweeted on Friday.
Romanian firefighters, who brought five fire engines, will work until July 31 in the Attica region, which includes the capital Athens.
Those arriving on Friday will be relieved by the same number of Romanian firefighters as on 15 July. He will be replaced in August by a 25-strong French contingent.
A team of 16 Bulgarian firefighters, along with four fire tenders, also arrived in the city of Larissa in central Greece on Friday, and was greeted by local officials and fire service officials. Bulgarians will remain in the region throughout July.
16 German firefighters will begin work in the Peloponnese on 15 July; They will be replaced in early August by 14 Norwegian and 24 Finnish firefighters, who will be relieved once, in mid-August, by the same number of their compatriots.
Forest fires are frequent in Greece, helped by hot and dry weather and persistent high winds. Climate change also means that the wildfire season is getting longer.
Greek officials say high fuel costs have added to the challenges facing the fire service, which relies heavily on water-dropping aircraft to fight fires in the mountainous country.
Greece will start using fire retardant chemicals in water droplets this year and will also use fire extinguishers strategically to fight large fires.
Four of the six foreign contingents watched a live firefighting exercise west of Athens on Thursday. The leaders of the German and Norwegian teams watched the exercise online.
A study by an international consortium of research institutions suggests that extended wildfire seasons and fire intensity will also negatively affect efforts to limit carbon dioxide emissions due to depleted forests, which are usually effective carbon absorbers. There are. The study also suggests that the intensity of wildfires may progressively exceed current firefighting capabilities.