Friends of the Earth Cyprus is a non-governmental, non-political and non-profit environmental organization. Founded in 1980, it is a member of FoE Europe as well as FoE International which has 66 members. It has approximately 300 members, quite a success considering Cyprus' small size and how fragmented the environmental movement is, with many different environmental and ecological organizations. Our head office is in Limassol, and members are from all over Cyprus.
Over the years, we have campaigned on a number of important issues. To give a sample: - aluminium and paper recycling - agro-tourism - Sustainable Europe - sustainable tourism - packaging - unleaded petrol - architectural heritage - banning of spring hunting - air travel.
Once a year, an annual general meeting takes place and a new Council (President, Secretary, Treasurer and three members) is elected. Meetings are held regularly twice a month and are open to all members. Our publications, which are bi-lingual (Greek/English) are our newsletter Link (quarterly) and our magazine Earthlines (bi-annual). In recent years, we have taken recycling issues, which lag far behind those of most European countries, very seriously, working with local authorities and on public awareness to realize our goals.
We are also very much involved in Mediterranean issues through the Mediterranean Network (Mednet). Our voice is also heard on local issues, such as the Akamas peninsula in the north-west of Cyprus, an unspoiled wilderness area with unique fauna and flora. Environmentalists are campaigning for it to be declared a national park, despite huge opposition from developers and others. A new long-term project is our ecological workshop, which aims to bring education directly into elementary and secondary school pupils. Adult education by itself is not enough; we need to start right from the classroom, working our way up into other levels of society. Education, research, campaigning, lobbying: these are the methods we use to mark a change in our society