Canada, Portugal sign MOU on wildland fire co-operation
July 10, 2023
By Avert staff
Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) and the Agency for Integrated Rural Fire Management of the Portuguese Republic signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) last week, agreeing to further co-operation on combating and mitigating wildland fires.
An NRCan news release on Thursday said the MOU sets out procedures for the exchange of wildfire fighting resources, and establishes a framework that encourages reciprocal support and co-operation.
Canadian Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said the agreement will advance joint efforts to protect livelihoods and communities from wildfires.
“In the face of the most severe wildfire season in history, our top priority will always be keeping Canadians safe. This arrangement with the Portuguese Republic will ensure effective cooperation on both sides of the Atlantic,” Wilkinson said.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development recognizes Portugal as a leader in wildland fire management transformation and innovation, NRCan said. The MOU will allow for knowledge sharing, including the potential to accelerate training and technology transfer, science and prevention strategies.
“Portugal and Canada already have a history of sharing resources, as was recently the case with the dispatch of 140 Portuguese operatives to support the firefighting efforts in various Canadian provinces,” Tiago Oliveira, chair of the board of directors for the agency, said in the release. “The signing of this memorandum will further strengthen the mutual assistance between the two countries in managing rural fires, allowing for the exchange of knowledge, research and resources for prevention and suppression. With the North Atlantic Wildfire Cooperation, both nations will be better prepared to jointly protect nature and their citizens.”
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