Commission builds stockpiles for chemical, biological and nuclear emergencies – POLITICO

The European Commission announced on Wednesday that it is building up its strategic stockpiles to improve the bloc’s preparedness for chemical, biological and radionuclear (CBRN) emergencies.

The €540.5 million rescEU stockpile includes medicines, equipment and vaccines to treat people exposed to these emergencies and was set up together with the Commission’s Health Emergencies Agency (HERA).

As part of the stockpiling strategy, the Commission is also developing a decontamination reserve, which will include both personnel and equipment needed for decontamination following exposure to CBRN agents.

The announcement comes after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine led to fighting over the country’s nuclear power plants, which risked damage that could cause a release of dangerous radiation. President Vladimir Putin has also put Moscow’s strategic missile arsenal on alert, stoking fears of a nuclear escalation.

“We are taking concrete steps to increase Europe’s preparedness against potential threats. We are establishing both a decontamination reserve and a new stockpile of equipment tailored for chemical, biological or nuclear emergencies,” said Janez Lenarčič, Commissioner for Crisis Management. “Our goal is to provide our citizens with rapid response capabilities should such an emergency ever arise.”

The European Union has mobilized its rescEU medical reserve to procure potassium iodide tablets, with nearly 3 million tablets delivered to Ukraine through the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, the commission said in a statement. Commission builds stockpiles for chemical, biological and nuclear emergencies - POLITICO

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