In view of the training seminar “Biodiversity Loss: Citizen Participation in Environmental Policy Making” by iSea and the Green Tank, which will take place in Heraklion, Crete, on Friday 03 November 2022, Ioli Christopoulou, Policy Director of Green Tank, gave an interview on SKAI Crete 92.1 radio and journalist Eleni Vakethianaki on the latest data on biodiversity loss and the empowerment of citizens in decision-making in order to respond to this ongoing crisis.
The most recent studies show that the planet is currently undergoing an ecological crisis: 70% of its land area is degraded, 60% of seas and oceans are modified and over 80% of wetlands have disappeared. As Ioli Christopoulou pointed out, these harsh indicators reflect the extent of the loss of biodiversity. The intensifying natural disasters show the declining state of nature’s contributions with consequences that threaten life on the planet and are now evident in the daily lives of citizens.
With such changes taking place, awareness has been raised and knowledge on environmental issues has increased. However, the challenge to take action and move from mere protest to active participation in nature protection remains.
As Ioli Christopoulou underlined, the aim of the project “Learn- Participate – Protect” is to empower citizens in this direction, by informing them about participation in public consultations. The response to date from young people, students and members of voluntary organisations with different backgrounds is the strongest proof that the need to protect the environment is common and paves the way for active citizen participation in issues of concern.
The project “Learn-Participate-Protect the Εnvironment” is implemented by iSea in partnership with the Green Tank, under the Active Citizens Fund programme. It includes two cycles of informational and training activities consisting of webinars and live seminars during the academic years 2021-2022 and 2022-2023.
You can learn more about the project (in Greek) here.
* The Active citizens fund in Greece is supported through a €13,5m grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway as part of the EEA Grants 2014 – 2021. The programme aims to develop the sustainability and capacity of the civil society sector in Greece, and to strengthen its role in promoting and safeguarding democratic procedures, active citizenship and human rights. The Fund Operator for the Active citizens fund in Greece is Bodossaki Foundation in consortium with SolidarityNow.