Informal meeting of the Ministers for the Environment: arrivals and round table
End production: 12/04/2008 First transmission: 12/04/2008
European Union Ministers for the Environment met on 12 April 2008 in the Brdo pri Kranju congress centre, Slovenia. The debate on biodiversity, biomass and bio-fuels focused particularly on forest biodiversity as providing both a challenge and an opportunity for mitigating climate change. The emphasis was on the sustainable use of forest biomass for energy, including second-generation bio-fuels, and on determining sustainable criteria for the use of forest biomass. The introductory address by the Presidency was followed by presentations by the invited speakers. The subsequent discussion involved the Ministers, representatives of the European Commission, European Parliament, European Environment Agency and the European Environmental Bureau. After the meeting, the Ministers planted a few trees in Brdo, symbolizing their commitment to combating climate change. The Presidency said it wished to bring the key messages of the ministerial meeting closer to the general public and to individuals, who by their actions can significantly contribute to the sustainable use of natural resources and, thus, help offset climate change. An exhibition on innovative environmental technologies related to second-generation biofuels was therefore organized in the context of the ministerial meeting. The participating countries were invited to present their good practices on display boards installed in Ljubljana city centre. The Ministers for the Environment visited the exhibition on 12 April 2008, during an afternoon walk through the centre of Ljubljana. Afterwards, they also visited Postojna Caves, the most famous Slovenian underground karst cave system.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Participants arriving at the congress centre by bus (3 shots)
||Janez Podobnik, Slovenian Minister for the Environment and Spatial Planning, (in SLOVENIAN) saying that he expects a substantial expert discussion about the significance of forests not just as an area of biodiversity but also for serious new ways to exploit biomass and also as that area in which modern civilization can escape to
||Stavros Dimas, Member of the EC in charge of Environment, (in ENGLISH) saying that looking at biofuels in detail and seeing the benefits and what problems they create is a good thing to do; there are concerns in other countries and at the European Union level also; even when the European Council has decided on the ten percent target, it was clearly stated that biofuels should be subject to sustainability criteria and this is what they are doing; they are working on sustainability criteria in order to take care of the negative impacts and gain from the use of biofuels, by either promoting second generation biofuels or looking very carefully that the biofuels used come from products which do not replace other agricultural products which are used for food
||Sigmar Gabriel, German Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, (in GERMAN) saying that Germany and France will find common ground; Germany and France are the motors of the European Union; it would be silly if they didn't find a common language on the issue of the environment; he supports that everyone set standards, for small, medium and big cars; they need a long-term goal which will continue through 2012
||Exterior view of the congress centre
||Cutaways (2 shots)
||General view of the roundtable before the meeting (9 shots)
||Exterior view of Brdo Castle (2 shots)