Achievements in Portugal 2004-2009
Around a quarter of the funding in Portugal went to sustainable development projects to improve the social, economic and infrastructural situation in degenerated urban areas in Lisbon and Oporto. The projects were part of a larger urban rehabilitation programme in Portugal which aimed to empower the residents of these neighbourhoods and improve their living conditions. This was achieved by providing educational training and sports facilities to implement social and educational intervention programmes, by providing assistance to innovation and enterpreneurship via a team of technical experts, and by construction and remodelling of basic infrastructure such as electricity, gas, telephone lines and roads.
Other sustainable development and environmental projects focused on issues such as agriculture and forestry, biodiversity, water pollution reduction and water management. Through one project in the Castro Verde Special Protection Area, for example, sustainable farming systems were developed through work to mitigate desertifi cation, the certifi cation of sustainably managed farms, and the fi nancing of a feasibility study complemented by various capacitybuilding and awareness-raising activities.
The second largest sector targeted the conservation of cultural heritagein Portugal, contributing to opening up 11 new sites to the public. Various conservation work was carried out, such as on the Monserrate Palace and the Chalet of the Countess of Edla, the aim being to open parts of these monuments to the public. Ancient hydraulic systems in 12 gardens and parks across Portugal were restored, contributing to the preservation of landscape art. In an effort to revitalise the historical and cultural heritage of the Torres Vedras defence lines, numerous rehabilitation oper ations were carried out, and infrastructure enabling the use of these monuments for tourism was deployed.
Of the 32 projects, 13 were implemented in co-operation with Norwegian entities in areas such as improving drinking water, management of water resources and waste water, and coastal-zone management plans, but also within the cultural heritage and research sectors. Researchers at the University of Porto collaborated with colleagues from Rikshospitalet University Hospital, Norway to strengthen the early detection and treatment of gastric and cervical cancer. Around 100 medical staff were trained and the yearly capacity for patients increased by 1 200.