The massive wildfires that ravaged parts of Central and South Greece (in Evia, Attica and Peloponnese) are gradually put under control.

The extent of damage is heartbreaking. The European Forest Fire Information System (EFFIS) data shows that around 65,000 hectares of Greek forest have been burnt so far this year. Half of these are in North Evia, where hundreds of homes and businesses have been destroyed or damaged.

The forestland burnt in Nort Evia, 11/8/2021, source: Copernicus/Emergency Management Service- Mapping

 

To tackle the unprecedented natural disaster the Greek government said it will take comprehensive action.

For starters, it pledged around 2 billion euros to the reforestation of the burned forestland and the preservation of local biodiversity.

It plans to develop modern irrigation networks to deal with drought and possible future floods.

Furthermore, the Greek Ministry of Finances is preparing to issue “green” bonds.

They will be used to finance a number of projects and actions the context of “green and sustainable growth”.

Finally, the Greek government will proceed with the procurement of:

  • modern fire detection and extinguishing systems
  • early warning systems for natural and man-made disasters
  • firefighting helicopters and aircraft
  • helicopters for personnel and first response teams transport
  • new fire fighting and forest patrol vehicles
  • water rescue equipment
  • aerial command and control centers and drones.

The total budget of the measures announced will reach 16 billion euros that will mostly come from European funds.