Environmental policy test in Paris on the way to joining OECD2017-02-10
As Lithuania is joining the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), it has made an essential step in the environmental sphere. At a special session of the OECD Environmental Policy Committee on 7-9 February in Paris dedicated to the accession, our country presented its readiness to implement the OECD environmental requirements.
The team of the Ministry of Environment, including Vilija Augutavičienė, Director of the Economics and International Relations Department, Agnė Kniežaitė-Gofmanė , Director of the Water Department, and Vitalijus Auglys, Director of the Pollution Prevention Department, introduced the participants of the session to Lithuania’s environmental policy measures, the management of public spending in the environmental sphere, environmental taxes, ways to solve transboundary pollution problems, water management and the improvement of the quality of water, etc.
Attending this presentation were all the members of the Environmental Policy Committee, among them representatives of the environmental authorities from 35 countries. The presentation was especially favourably assessed by the representatives of Japan, Germany, Denmark, Hungary, Israel, Finland, Sweden, Portugal and Spain.
The ‘examiners’ stressed that in the water sphere it was important for Lithuania to cooperate with other states, especially Belarus and Russia, and effectively coordinate actions for the implementation of sustainable development. Therefore they wanted to find out the steps that our country was taking in these spheres. The members of the Committee were also interested in how Lithuania was compensated environmental damage caused by emergencies, promoted innovation in the industry and energy sectors, harmonised the requirements for public health and security and what measures were applied to promote sustainable mobility. In addition, they requested information on the introduction of a volunteer visitor ticket for protected areas and the use of funds received from environmental taxes.
In the part of the session devoted exclusively to the members of the Environmental Policy Committee, experts of the OECD Secretariat assessed Lithuania’s preparedness for OECD accession in the environmental sphere. They noted that our country had the necessary legal and political mechanisms in place for implementing the OECD requirements without any reservation. The next meeting of the Environmental Policy Committee will consider the approval of a decision drawn up by the OECD Secretariat on the preparedness of Lithuania to adopt and implement the OECD environmental requirements.