Greece has appointed former European Union commissioner Christos Stylianides as minister of the newly created climate change ministry to address the problem.
Stylianides, 63, was appointed after the wildfires that burned more than 1,000 square kilometers (385 square miles) of forest on the island of Evia and in southern Greece.
“I have accepted (the position) with the full awareness of the challenges and expectations that come with it. The consequences of climate change have overtaken us, and we must accelerate major change without delay,” Stylianides, who served as commissioner for humanitarian aid and crisis management between 2014 and 2019, said.
“Disaster prevention and preparedness is the most effective weapon we have,” he added.
Stylianides will lead firefighting, disaster relief, and policies to adapt to rising temperatures caused by climate change as minister of the climate crisis and civil protection.
Intense heatwaves in southern Europe in July and August, which were described as the worst in decades in Greece, fueled deadly wildfires in Turkey and fires in Italy, France, and the Balkans.
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