Consolidating the EU Civil Protection Mechanism in order to improve the EU's capacity to react in the face of extreme events, including those occurring outside its territory

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Opinjoni tal-KESE: Consolidating the EU Civil Protection Mechanism in order to improve the EU's capacity to react in the face of extreme events, including those occurring outside its territory

Key points:

  • The Union Civil Protection Mechanism (UCPM or 'the Mechanism') is no longer sufficiently capable nor wide enough to respond to disasters linked to climate change and multiple risks in terms of prevention, preparedness, warning, planning and operational capabilities, occurring inside and outside the Union’s territory.
  • The UCPM is called upon tackle other risks such as pandemics, assistance to people in war zones, major industrial risks, large-scale maritime pollution, consequences of cyber-attacks on electricity or water networks, or management of humanitarian crises linked to immigration.
  • The link between civil protection (short-term operations) and humanitarian aid (long-term management) needs to be better addressed and coordinated.
  • The EESC considers that post-disaster action of the EU for events outside its territory needs to be further identified and developed.
  • The EESC underlines the utmost importance of evolving operational cooperation through harmonisation of training, compatibility of material and equipment, clarity and efficiency of command chains.
  • The EESC considers that the need to set up a European agency for civil protection and humanitarian aid should be examined and draws attention to the necessary progress to be made with regard to the intervention decision-making process, outside the EU territory.
  • The EESC considers that the diplomatic dimension of European civil protection is not sufficiently developed. It also questions the definition of the geographical scope of the UCPM and the selection criteria of participating countries and calls for appropriate communication to  be encouraged in the international public opinion in order to enhance the UCPM’s action.
  • The EESC would support the idea of developing joint disaster management first response transnational teams with own resources, joint training and standardisation of resources and equipment.
  • The EESC encourages a proposal for a legislative amendment to authorise immediate response under the Mechanism in the event of an emergency, without requiring a prior request from the Member State concerned, the Member State retaining the right to refuse such assistance.

Practical information

Composition of the Study Group

Administrator in charge: Ana Dujmovic/Assistant: Céline Randa

For more information, please contact REX Section Secretariat