President of the Republic of Cyprus, Nikos Christodoulides, stressed the importance of environmental protection, calling on all citizens to follow the example set by voluntary organizations and private entities participating in the launch of the “Let’s Do it Cyprus” campaign at the Zygi Fishing Shelter.
President Christodoulides further said that climate change poses a significant threat to nations and that the protection of the environment is the foundation for Cyprus’s economic well-being.
He noted that he consciously chose to attend the event along with the majority of the Cabinet because the protection of the natural environment in the country is not merely a government priority.
“We must be the first to demonstrate, through our example, the seriousness of this matter and our commitment to it. I believe that, as a country and a state, we have fallen behind on this issue,” he said.
The President added that the state was following the lead of voluntary organizations and private entities that recognized the importance of environmental protection much earlier. He stressed that Cyprus, like other countries in the Eastern Mediterranean, is facing the imminent threat of climate change and referred to the need to build a culture of environmental responsibility to ensure the nation’s sustainability.
He further pointed out that Cyprus’ comparative advantages, such as its sea, sun, and environment, are vital for its economy and tourism. Failing to protect these assets, he said, would jeopardize the nation’s survival.
The Commissioner for the Environment, Maria Panayiotou, in her speech, noted that the objective is not only to conduct clean-up campaigns but also to start reducing, reusing, and recycling materials, ensuring proper waste management.
“The government is working on coordinated and targeted efforts to cultivate an environmental culture through collaboration with all ministries, academic communities, organized citizens’ groups, and environmental organizations to prevent pollution to the extent possible” she said.
She added that the joint campaign, organized with the Department of Fisheries and Marine Research of the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development, and Environment, aims to convey the importance of stopping pollution to the entire population.