New manual concludes the current phase of ENPI FLEG in Azerbaijan
A comprehensive manual on prevention and assistance in response to wildfires has been developed for volunteer groups fighting wildfires. It has been produced within the framework of the informational component of the World Bank activities in the country.
While working on producing the manual ENPI FLEG Programâ€™s experts extensively cooperated with specialists from the respective ministries and academic centers. Considerable contribution was made by the Ministry of Emergency Situations, the Forest Development Department of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources, the Center of Ecological Education and Experience, and other structures.
The importance of producing such a manual as a support tool for volunteer groups in extinguishing wildfires was initially pointed out during a seminar organized by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in November 2011. The seminar was a part of the Ecology and Security in the South Caucasus process. Officials from the Ministry of Emergency Situations, representatives of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources and respective forest protection structures highlighted the countryâ€™s inability to contain wildfires without the support of the local population. Other concerns included serious problems stemming from the lack of knowledge and poor public awareness on the rules of conduct during wildfires, as well as lack of prevention and monitoring measures.
The seminar was attended by the ENPI FLEG Program coordinator for Azerbaijan who was instrumental for defining one of the key outcomes of the event â€“ the need to produce a manual. This manual encompasses positive international experiences and includes the current situation in the country and related challenges regarding fire security in the forest regions.
The manual is expected to become an effective support tool in the cooperation between official state structures, and the local population and youth in the area of prevention and containment of wildfires in Azerbaijan.