Cyprus Mail

Earth Hour marked at presidential palace

An event was held at the presidential palace on Saturday night to mark the annual Earth Hour in which lights are turned off for an hour to symbolise energy saving across the planet.

“This symbolic action aims not only to inform but also to enable all citizens to take measures against climate change,” said President Nicos Anastasiades, who addressed the event.

Anastasiades said global warming was “now unequivocal” given that 2015 was proven to be the warmest year since records began in the late 19th century.

“Extreme weather, alternating long periods of drought and heavy rainfall, water scarcity, heat waves, reduction of biodiversity and the subsequent effects on human health, are the effects of climate change and they are occurring with greater intensity in more and more areas of our planet.”

He added that the consequences would impact on vital economic sectors such as agriculture, energy, transport, tourism and health making daily survival difficult for many.

“It is our duty and responsibility to preserve the natural resources of our planet so that future generations can enjoy a healthy environment and a better quality of life,” Anastasiades said.

“To make this feasible, we need to implement the necessary policies and measures to ensure that the challenge of climate change can become manageable and then reversible.”

Cyprus aimed to eventually a low-carbon economy by ending its dependence on the import of fossil fuels. This shift would increase competitiveness and create new jobs, the president said.

By implementing its international commitments, it would apply a coherent framework through measure including the introduction of best available techniques in industry, intensification of controls and inspections and the expansion of public transport.

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