Population comes to improve the rescue of the natural environment2016-04-07
The public is increasingly intolerant of environmental violations. This is what the data of the Centre for Information Gathering and Management at the State Environmental Protection Agency (“the Centre”) suggest. In the first quarter 2016, the Centre received over 2,500 reports on detected or possible violations, or 500 reports more compared to the same period in 2015.
According to Kęstutis Trečiokas, the Minister of Environment, “the public contributes to a more effective “emergency assistance” to the nature and entire surrounding environment. Once environmentalists receive timely information, they can either contain or prevent violations in timely and efficient manner. This is to the advantage of both nature, and the public”.
Now that the public can report on violations in fast and simple manner, around the clock, also during weekends and public holidays, the residents are growing increasingly intolerant to environmental violations. All you have to do is call the emergency number 112, or the Centre directly at (8~5) 273 2995. The public has witness a prompt response to their calls. As soon as information is relayed by an operator of the Emergency Response Centre, or following a direct phone call from an informant on a violation, the employees of the Centre immediately direct environmentalists to the place in question (or a mobile team of environmentalists, where necessary).
In the first quarter, just as before, most calls on violations came from the largest cities. In the period of 3 months in 2016, 628 calls came from Vilnius residents, 406 calls from Klaipėda residents, and 383 calls from Kaunas residents. Most reports, approx. 1,300 concerned wild animals either injured or hit by traffic (roe-deer mosly), as well as wild animals straying into residential areas. A substantial number of calls comes on the birds staying for hibernation in Lithuania. These birds do not leave, and the public is to blame, since some people have fun in feeding the birds in other seasons, thus disturbing regular life cycle of the wild birds, causing the birds to abandon their natural feeding habits.
A number of complaints (302) was received on the air pollution during heating season, and illegal incineration of waste. Still, a certain percentage of the reports go unconfirmed, as it later appears that the neighbours are using coal or peat for heating. For the most part, these instances of air pollution are identified in garage blocks, car repair shops, or where the local residents burn scraps of furniture for heating purposes.
In the previous quarter, the third place on the list, based on the number of report, went to violations of fishing and hunting regulations (172 and 139 respectively). The public is increasingly intolerant to poachers, and tends to come to help the environmentalists to deal with them.