World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

EU civil protection assistance to US after Katrina

EU civil protection assistance to United States after hurricane Katrina

Assistance from 21 countries participating in the EU’s Civil protection mechanism has so far been accepted by the United States in the clean-up after the hurricane Katrina. The assistance represents water pumps, first aid kits, meals, blankets, tents, telecommunications equipment etc. The bulk of European assistance has now been delivered. About 50 airplanes have gone from Europe to the US with equipment and personnel. Three further deliveries of donations from EU Member States to the US are scheduled still this week. Details of the assistance can be found in the annexed list. Approximately 150 European civil protection experts are or have been assisting the clean-up operations in the New Orleans region.

Teams from Germany, Luxembourg and the Netherlands have been working high capacity pumps. They have considerably contributed to the dewatering of the city of New Orleans, which has been almost completed during the past week. A French team consisting of 17 divers is helping to unblock the levees and to clear marine channels. An Italian emergency team has already finished their task and returned to Europe. Sweden has sent telecommunications equipment and technicians. Further civil protection teams from Belgium, Hungary and Finland have been embedded in the operations of charity organizations or the U.S. Red Cross.

Peter Kaas-Claesson, the EU-coordination expert appointed by the European Commission, has been on the ground in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, for more than a week, replacing David Horobin from the UK. Kaas-Claesson, a Danish national, has a long experience in disaster management. His tasks include monitoring progress of EU shipments and EU teams in the field, liaising with the US authorities, briefing any incoming EU teams, providing technical advice and providing daily situation reports to the EU Monitoring and Information Centre (MIC) in Brussels.

In view of the new threats posed by the approaching hurricane Rita, the Commission has extended Kaas-Claesson´s mandate for several days to ensure that the MIC will be able to provide first-hand assessments from the situation on the ground after Rita´s landfall. The MIC is on stand-by 24 hours/day and ready to assist the US with further assistance if requested.

The Monitoring and Information Centre (MIC)

The MIC is run by the Civil Protection Unit of DG Environment. Its main task is to facilitate the coordinated delivery of EU civil protection assistance to disaster-stricken areas. The MIC has played an active role in the management of the EU assistance following the Katrina disaster, closely cooperating with the EU Presidency and Member States since the outset of the crisis.

The MIC is the central information hub of European civil protection assistance. It keeps track of EU assistance, maintains contacts between Member States and identifies suitable disaster management experts to be sent on the ground. The EU experts have received a special training in disaster management and civil protection courses financed by the Commission. The MIC also coordinates with other organizations such as the Red Cross and the UN.
Further details on the EU’s Civil Protection Mechanism and its Monitoring and Information Centre can be found in Memo/05/306 and

http://europa.eu.int/comm/environment/civil/index.htm

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 



UN: Visionary ‘Blue Transformation’ Strategy To Enhance Underwater Food Systems

Record levels of fisheries and aquaculture production are making a critical contribution to global food security, the UN Ocean Conference under way in Lisbon, Portugal, heard on Wednesday...
More>>
Abu Akleh Shooting: Fatal Shot Came From Israeli Forces, Says OHCHR
Israeli forces were behind the fatal shooting of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh in the West Bank - not indiscriminate Palestinian firing - the UN human rights office, OHCHR, alleged on Friday... More>>


Ethiopia: Conflict, Drought, Dwindling Food Support, Threatens Lives Of 20 Million

Hunger is tightening its grip on more than 20 million Ethiopians who are facing conflict in the north, drought in the south and dwindling food and nutrition support beginning next month, the UN food relief agency warned on Thursday... More>>


UN Ocean Conference: Opens With Call For Urgent Action To Tackle Ocean Emergency
With climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution exacting a devastating toll on the world’s ocean — critical to food security, economic growth and the environment... More>>

World Vision: Deeply Concerned For Thousands Affected By Afghanistan Quake
World Vision is deeply concerned about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Afghanistan in the wake of a powerful earthquake in the early hours of this morning... More>>



Malaysia: UN Experts Welcome Announcement To Abolish Mandatory Death Penalty

UN human rights experts* today commended an announcement made by the Malaysian government that it will abolish the country’s mandatory death penalty and encouraged Parliament to take concrete steps to pass the agreement into law... More>>