Call to join the group was sent to all MPs, with 25 of them, representing various parties, responding. They pledged to remain personally committed to issues of environmental protection and sustainable development, and actively work on promotion and acceptance of European standards and norms in this field. Event itself was held on Wednesday, 9 November within the Parliamentary Week.
In addition to MPs, inauguration was attended by representatives of international organizations and civil society organizations active in the field of environmental protection. On behalf of the Secretariat of the Green Parliamentary Group, participants were welcomed by Sonja Licht and Marija Mutić, as well as MP Ivan Karić, as one of the longest-serving MPs in the Group.
MPs have presented their motives for participation in the GPG and establish a dialogue with representatives of civil society on issues of common interest. They presented current activities and also GPG plans for the future, especially in relation to program GIZ IMPACT on waste and wastewater management as well as United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on biodiversity and international conventions.
Symbolically, MPs signed a memorandum pledging to undertake initiatives at the local, regional and national level in relation to the protection and improvement of the environment; involve the public in the decision-making process in the field; gain new knowledge in the field of environment and sustainable development; promote the idea that the environment knows no borders and political color and promote the implementation of the values and principles of sustainable development.
The objective of the formation of informal Green Parliamentary Group is that environmental issues are given priority and are in focus of decision makers. GPG marks an excellent example of bringing MPs together around issues of common interest and prove that the area of the environment knows no political color or border. Established for the first time in November 2009, and restored with every convocation of the National Assembly since, membership in the GPG is voluntary. Its members will have the opportunity to improve their knowledge and skills, establish cooperation with fellow lawmakers, experts and activists from the region, and to cooperate with civil society organizations dealing with issues of environmental protection.
Text: Marija Mutić; photos CMV, taken from zelenidijalog.rs