A ministerial decree which approves the environmental reports for hydrocarbon exploration and exploitation west and southwest of the island of Crete was signed on Tuesday by the Hellenic Ministry of Environment and Energy.
Speaking to Athens-Macedonia News Agency (ANA), Environment and Energy Minister Giorgos Stathakis said the relevant reports need to be ratified by parliament before the end of the summer.
The energy minister said the reports address the need for the creation of an environmental unit to assess the impact of hydrocarbon exploration on the environment, concerns and issues of local communities and cooperation with relevant observatories and state authorities.
Finally, Stathakis emphasized that seismic surveys will be carried out under a detailed set of parameters to protect the marine environment; these will be described in an appropriate Environmental Action Plan. The plan will include specific measures to prevent unwanted impact on cetacean species, underwater shipwrecks and submarine telecommunications wire networks.
Further, Stathakis also said that concession agreements on hydrocarbon exploration for the areas of the Ionian Sea and Allotment 10 of Kyparissia Gulf, western Peloponnese, will be signed in coming weeks.