The overall amount of 200 million euros is intended to minimise the damage caused by the rural fires in August in the Serra da Estrela Natural Park, including the municipalities of Celorico da Beira, Covilhã, Gouveia, Guarda, Manteigas and Seia, as well as in all municipalities with an accumulated burned area in 2022, equal to or greater than 4,500 hectares or 10% of the respective area.
According to the statement released at the end of the Council of Ministers, the municipalities of Carrazeda de Ansiães (Bragança), Mesão Frio (Vila Real), Murça (Vila Real), Vila Real, Albergaria-a-Velha (Aveiro), Alvaiázere (Leiria), Ansião (Leiria) and Ourém (Santarém) are eligible.
"Immediate response measures are defined, aimed at emergency stabilisation actions and social and economic support to populations, companies and municipalities. Measures are also determined, to increase resilience and competitiveness, and these also cover all the municipalities of the Intermunicipal Community of Beiras and Serra da Estrela," reads the note.
The Government also determined that "a Revitalisation Programme for the Serra da Estrela Natural Park should be developed, focusing on measures and projects to be implemented in the short and medium term that should promote the sustainable development of the region, the recovery and revitalisation of its natural heritage and biodiversity".
Serra da Estrela was affected by a fire that started on the 6th August in Garrocho, in the municipality of Covilhã (Castelo Branco district) which was then considered to be dominated on the 13th. The fire suffered a reactivation on the 15th and was considered again dominated on the 17th of the same month, during the night.
The flames spread to the district of Guarda, in the municipalities of Manteigas, Gouveia, Guarda and Celorico da Beira, and also reached the municipality of Belmonte, in the district of Castelo Branco.
On the 25th, the Government approved the declaration of a calamity situation for the PNSE, affected by fires, since July, as requested by the mayors of the affected territories.
The disaster situation has already been published in the Official Gazette and will be in force for a period of one year, for "the purpose of restoring normality in the respective geographical area".