Greece creates climate crisis ministry after huge wildfires

Greece creates climate crisis ministry after huge wildfires

ATHENS, Greece — Greece’s center-right government has created a new ministry to address the impact of climate change and named former European Union commissioner Christos Stylianides as minister.

Stylianides, 63, who served as commissioner for humanitarian aid and crisis management between 2014 and 2019, was appointed in the wake of wildfires that burned more than 1,000 square kilometers (385 square miles) of forest on the island of Evia and in southern Greece.

Intense heat waves in southern Europe in July and August — described in Greece at the worst in decades — fueled deadly wildfires in Turkey as well and blazes in Italy, France, and Balkan countries.

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The appointment was announced Monday after a previous candidate, former armed forces chief and defense minister Evangelos Apostolakis, withdrew, citing the lack of promised cross-party consensus for the new post.

In this late Friday, Aug. 6, 2021 file photo, a man watches the flames as wildfire approaches Kochyli beach near

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