Following an initiative launched by President of the Hellenic Republic Katerina Sakellaropoulou, the presidents of the member-states of the Arraiolos Group – Greece, Italy, Croatia, Malta, Portugal and Slovenia – on Thursday issued a joint appeal calling for urgent action to address the dangers from the climate crisis in the Mediterranean.
In this, the presidents noted that “the climate crisis has arrived” and “reached explosive proporations”, such that “there is now talk of a ‘state of climate emergency'”. They noted that UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, at the end of July, had spoken of the current crisis as a state of “global boiling”.
“Its effects are especially visible in our region, the Mediterranean, which is severely affected and at immediate risk of not only water and electricity scarcity, but also of floods, widespread heat waves, fires and desertification. Extreme natural phenomena are destroying the ecosystem and threatening our daily life, our way of life,” they said.
“There is no more time to waste, no more time to compromise for political or economic reasons. It is imperative to act and take urgent effective initiatives. All Mediterranean countries must coordinate and react, engage in a collective effort to halt and reverse the effects of the climate crisis.
It is the duty of all of us to act in this direction and to adopt concrete policies to this effort. Raise public awareness, educate and inspire in everyone the ethics of environmental responsibility. Not only for the present, but also for the future of our children and generations to come,” the message adds.
“The Heads of State of the following Mediterranean countries and members of the Arraiolos Group pledge to fully support joint action initiatives and appeal to the European Union, other Mediterranean countries and the international community to keep this issue high on their political agenda,” the presidents concluded.
The document was signed by President Sakellaropoulou of Greece, Italian President Sergio Mattarella, Croatian President Zoran Milanovic, Malta’s President George Vella, Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and Slovenian President Natasa Pirc Musar.