On the 30th, the Florianópolis City Hall regulated the creation of Gepa (Special Group for Environmental Protection). The group is a division of the Florianópolis Municipal Guard, focusing on the fight against environmental crimes.
The division is now in the implementation phase, informed the Municipal Public Security Department. The group already handles cases of environmental crime and is now taking a course with Floram (Santa Catarina Environment Foundation). The number to activate Gepa is the same used by the Municipal Guard (153).
The creation of the group was already provided for in Law No. 18,204, of 2017, responsible for regulating the Municipal Guard of Florianópolis. The agents reassigned to this sector must have specific training and will be able to “handle other occurrences when requested by their command”.
According to the decree, the Municipal Environmental Detachment Guard will focus “primarily on prevention and repression activities against environmental crimes and infractions, in the administrative and criminal spheres, supporting the actions of the Municipal Environment Department”.
The division will be composed of at least five effective agents of the Municipal Guard. To occupy the position, it is necessary to have completed the Professional Qualification Course (minimum 12 hours) and to complete an annual refresher course.
Patrolling should prioritize areas of native vegetation in Florianópolis. The law provides that the Environmental Group has up to two Operation Chiefs, who must be responsible for carrying out the activities and reporting to the Commander of the Municipal Guard.
The division is the responsibility of the Municipal Department of Public Security, and will receive technical support and training from the Municipal Department of Environment and Floram. According to the decree, Gepa will carry out the following activities:
- the ostensible and preventive patrolling in the Municipality of Florianópolis, preventing, prohibiting, inhibiting and restricting actions that attack the Environmental Heritage;
- support the actions of the Municipal Environment Department and FLORAM, providing support to environmental inspection agents, when requested;
- communicate the Municipal Environment Department and FLORAM the occurrence of any activities potentially causing damage to the environment and/or environmental crimes, for the adoption of legal measures;
- protect beaches, conservation units, permanent preservation areas, parks, squares, ponds, lakes, fauna, flora and natural beauty, within the scope of the Municipality;
- defend the rivers and springs that supply the city, monitoring the incidence of polluting agents to avoid damage to the community and the Environment;
- prevent hunting, fishing, cutting and suppression of vegetation in the Atlantic Forest Biome in appropriate cases, without proper authorization from the competent body;
- seize the products and instruments used in the infraction of an administrative and criminal nature, drawing up the respective seizure notice, and forward it to the competent public body;
- carry out actions for the preservation and protection of the environment in conjunction with the Department of the Environment and other public bodies;
- develop environmental education activities, preferably in the public municipal school system;
- participate in Civil Defense activities in the event of public calamities and major claims;
- make notifications, apprehensions and assessments of an environmental nature within the limits allowed by law;
- perform and comply with the rules of the Internal Control System;
- to carry out operations in conjunction with the Municipal Environment Department; and
- develop, when requested, actions in partnership with the Public Ministry, Public Security Agencies and other government institutions. Single paragraph;
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