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Cyprus’ Presidential Palace the first in the EU with EMAS certification
CNA - Antonios Gkildakis - CYPRUS/Nicosia 18/01/2018 16:21

The Presidential Palace of Cyprus was awarded on Thursday two environmental certificates, the EU Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) and the eco-label “Green Offices”. This makes it the only Presidential Palace in the EU with EMAS certification.
Both certificates were awarded during a ceremony, at the Presidential Palace, with those attending expressing hope that similar practices will be extended to the rest of the public sector. The Cabinet is expected to adopt a relevant decision soon, it was announced.
EMAS is a premium management instrument developed by the European Commission for companies and other organizations to evaluate, report, and improve their environmental performance.  
“Green Offices” is an innovative eco-label for offices and buildings, based on the activities of the Foundation for Environmental Education, an international NGO focusing on sustainable development around the world.
Both certificates were received by the Theodosis Tsiolas, Head of the Presidency Administration. The event was also attended by the Minister of Agriculture Nicos Kouyialis and the Director of the President’s Office, Michalis Sofocleous, who delivered a speech on behalf of the President.
In his address, President Anastasiades noted that this event is proof of the significance attributed to both certificates. “We aim at presenting an example today for other Departments, Services and Ministries of the Republic of Cyprus to follow, along with private companies” he said.
He also noted that both the “Green Offices” program and the EMAS scheme aim at raising environmental awareness, with the ultimate goal being the protection of the environment.
Kouyialis said from his part that implementing EMAS at the Presidential Palace is the greatest example for all organizations and companies to follow.
The last five years, under the guidance of President Anastasiades, we set environmental protection among our top priorities, he went on, noting that results are now visible.
Kouyialis also announced that the state is implementing recycling projects, with a budget of more than €30 mln.
Speaking about EMAS, he said that the aim is to extend the scheme throughout the state apparatus, noting that “this is a promise to our children”. The Cabinet will soon take a relevant decision, he said.
Environment Commissioner Ioanna Panayiotou said from her part that the “Green Offices” label requires strict implementation of a series of criteria concernign energy and water consumption, waste management, green areas and environmental training, among others.
The program is run under the auspices of the Commissioner and the National Operator is the Cyprus Marine Environment Protection Association (CYMEPA).

** The report is in the context of the project Rethink: Reduce- Reuse – Recycle which is funded by the EU programme LIFE+ (project code: LIFE13 INF/CY/000910) of the EU. Coordinating Beneficiary: CyBC. Partners: Green Dot Cyprus, Department of Environment, Cyprus Pedagogical Institute, CNA, Fost Plus Belgium **

*CNA reserves the copyright to the news stories it files, which is granted to subscribers for specific use only.

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