WGERS Mandate

Mandate for Working Group on Emergency and Rescue Services Co-operation

Risk scenarios for major accidents, natural disasters and man-made emergencies show many similarities in the Barents Region.

The 13 Barents counties cover vast sparsely populated areas with arctic/sub-arctic climate. Weather conditions can be extreme. There are long distances between centres of economic activity and isolated settlements. Transboundary co-operation across national/federal and county borders would facilitate and improve emergency and rescue operations. Assistance could be provided more efficiently, faster and at lower operating cost. Direct access to additional resources and specialised functions in neighbouring countries could be assured. Preparedness and prevention measures could be co-ordinated.

Objective

Strengthen and expand ongoing transboundary emergency and rescue co-operation at county level in order to improve interoperability of emergency and rescue services functions in the Barents Region. Raise efficiency and effectiveness in order to make optimal use of widely dispersed scarce resources and provide assistance faster and more directly. Clarify and simplify the applicable legal/administrative frameworks. Raise awareness of the importance of prevention. Increase preparedness for transboundary cooperation in the event of major accidents.

Methods of work

  • Conduct joint risk assessment for different parts of the Barents Region and disseminate the results to all relevant actors
  • Identify contact points for requesting/providing assistance and ensure regular up-dating of lists of contact addresses
  • Prepare and implement joint education and training programmes
  • Arrange mutual participation as observers in regular exercises and live operations
  • Organise and conduct joint exercises
  • Review and clarify relevant legal/administrative procedures and regulations applicable to request/provision of emergency and rescue assistance across national/federal and county borders
  • Compile clear and simple instruction manuals in all relevant languages for request/provision of rescue assistance
  • Co-ordinate preventive measures

 

Work Plan 2004 - 2005

Work plan 2004

  • Annual WG ERS report to BEAC and CSO
  • Supervise the INTERREG IIIA project WG ERS
    - Implement training programmes and exercises
    - Report on legal/administrative obstacles that need to be addressed at political level
  • Follow the planning process for "Barents Rescue 2005"
  • Prepare follow up project proposal within EU’s Neighbourhood Programme
  • Final project report to INTERREG IIIA, BEAC and CSO

2005

  • Annual WG ERS report to BEAC and CSO
  • Supervise the WG ERS Project within the EU’s Neighbourhood Programme
    - Continue and finalilze work in each task force
    - Task forces report to the WG ERS
    - Final WG ERS reoprt for follow up project to INTERREG IIIA, BEAC and CSO
  • Prepare and implement participation in exercise Barents Rescue 2005
  • Participate in APELL seminar in the Komi Republic, Russia

Children and Youth at Risk cooperation programme

The Children and Youth at Risk cooperation programme, adopted by and owned by the Joint Working Group on Health and related Social Issues, has their own section on the Barents Cooperation web page.

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"CLIMATE JOURNEY" PHOTO EXHIBITION

During two missions, in 2007 and 2012, Swedish journalist Tom Juslin traveled through the Nordic countries to find out how climate change affects people, animals and nature - "Climate Journey" opens the planned series of exhibitions in in Kirkenes

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