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National Sustainable Development Strategy updated in Lithuania

2009-09-17

National Sustainable Development Strategy updated in Lithuania

The Government approved a considerably updated National Sustainable Development Strategy on 16 September. Lithuania, just like other EU member states, took the initiative to improve it after the EU Sustainable Development Strategy was updated. The new document sets out the sustainable development priorities, principles, objectives and tasks of Lithuania, defines the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the county’s development, the state’s mission, provides an updated list of national sustainable development indicators and responsible authorities.

Despite the lengthy global economic crisis, the main sustainable development objective of Lithuania remains the same, namely to reach the 2003 EU average in terms of economic and social development and resource efficiency indicators by 2020, not to exceed permissible EU levels of environmental pollution, to meet the requirements of international conventions limiting environmental pollution and impacts on the global climate. It can only be achieved by introducing the latest and more environmentally friendly technologies. The strategy gives particular attention to scientific progress and knowledge.

One of Lithuania’s sustainable development priorities is modernisation of old blocks of flats and significant reduction of heat energy costs in the housing sector. Whereas heat insulation of such buildings is very poor and the heat supply infrastructure is old, the efficiency of energy use for housing needs in Lithuania is some 1.8-fold lower than in the majority of EU member states. By modernising blocks of flats and reducing energy costs for heating, Lithuania will contribute to the universal efforts to reduce climate change. It will be sought to use renewable energy resources and energy generated from waste for this purpose as much as possible.

The updated strategy gives much attention to the ensuring of energy security. High-voltage electricity networks of Lithuania are scheduled to be merged with Scandinavian and Polish networks. It is also planned to build a new nuclear power plant meeting EU safety requirements.

The Government has approved a specific plan of measures for the implementation of the strategy. It indicates the operators and time limits for implementation of each of the measures. The minister of environment has set up a new group of experts that has been charged with assessing the course of implementation of this strategy and preparing recommendations.

Public Information Division, tel. 266 3660 

17 September 2009

Minister of Environment of Lithuania Kęstutis Navickas
Minister of Environment of Lithuania Kęstutis Navickas