The Commission announces the finalists for the Natura 2000 Trophies 2022: vote for your favorite
On the occasion of the 30and anniversary of the creation of the Natura 2000 network, the European Commission today announced the finalists for the sixth edition of the Natura 2000 prize. Twenty-one finalists have been shortlisted out of 40 applications. The finalists come from thirteen EU Member States: Austria, Bulgaria, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Lithuania, Portugal, Slovenia and Spain and include several cross-border initiatives involving partners from Cyprus and Croatia. Online voting for the Citizens’ Award is now open and closes on April 27, 2022
Virginjus SinkeviciusCommissioner for the Environment, Oceans and Fisheries, said:
Protecting and restoring the EU’s natural heritage and biodiversity is key to adapting to a changing world and securing a sustainable future for generations to come. Over the past 30 years, the success of the EU Natura 2000 network is due to the tireless efforts of thousands of conservation professionals, volunteers and stakeholders working to protect, restore and promote nature. The achievements of this edition’s finalists show the importance of nature and the Natura 2000 network in ensuring a resilient future for us and for the planet.
The Natura 2000 Awards recognize conservation success stories across the EU and raise awareness of one of the EU’s outstanding achievements – the Natura 2000 network of protected areas. The objective of the Natura 2000 network is to ensure the long-term survival of our most precious and threatened species and habitats. Proper management of the Natura 2000 network of EU protected areas is crucial to achieving the ambitious targets of the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030, namely to put biodiversity on the path to recovery by 2030, with benefits for people, the climate and the planet. .
Finalists were shortlisted in five categories: Transboundary Cooperation, Socio-Economic Benefits, Communication, Marine Conservation and Terrestrial Conservation. A high-level jury will now evaluate the finalists and choose the five winners. The Citizens’ Award, sixth prize, rewards the public’s favorite finalist. The winners of the six awards will be announced at the awards ceremony on May 18, 2022.
About the Natura 2000 Prize 2022
The Natura 2000 award, now in its sixth edition, rewards the main achievements in nature conservation linked to the European Natura 2000 network of protected areas. A recent public opinion poll showed that 96% of Europeans agree that we have a responsibility to take care of nature, although only 30% have heard of the Natura 2000 network. The Natura 2000 Award helps to raise awareness of Natura 2000 , the work done by different organizations and individuals to safeguard these vital natural assets, and the health, cultural, societal and economic benefits that the network brings to all of us.
About Natura 2000
Natura 2000 is the European Union’s network of protected areas. It is the largest coordinated network of protected areas in the world with around 27,000 land and sea sites, covering more than 18% of EU land and around 9% of the surrounding seas. It consists of a wide variety of different sites across the continent, aiming to ensure the long-term survival of Europe’s most valuable and threatened species and habitat types, safeguarding them for future generations. . It also provides a wide range of ecosystem products and services beneficial to society and the economy. For example, it helps to mitigate and adapt to climate change by storing 35 billion tonnes of CO2 and contributes to food security by protecting and restoring pollinator habitats.
The Natura 2000 network is based on two pioneering European pieces of legislation – the Birds Directive of 1979 and the Habitats Directive of 1992 – and plays a key role in halting the loss of biodiversity in the EU. Although the network includes strictly protected nature reserves, the approach to conservation and sustainable use is much broader in the rest of Natura 2000, largely centered on people working with nature. Emphasis is placed on ensuring sustainable management, both ecologically and economically. Moreover, in the EU, around 4.4 million jobs are directly dependent on healthy ecosystems, and a significant proportion of these are located in Natura 2000 sites. The investment needs of the network are expected to support up to to 500,000 additional jobs.
Natura 2000 Prize 2022 website
Natura 2000 site
EU Biodiversity Strategy 2030