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European Union - Overview

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Main References

National Websites

Biodiversity Facts

Status and trends of biodiversity, including benefits from biodiversity and ecosystem services

The main ecosystems in Europe1 are croplands (33%), forests (30%), pastures (16%) and urban land (2%). Centuries of diverse farming and forestry traditions, resulting in a wide range of agricultural and woodland landscapes, have significantly contributed to Europe’s biodiversity... More »

Main pressures on and drivers of change to biodiversity (direct and indirect)

Among the main pressures and drivers causing biodiversity loss are habitat fragmentation, degradation and destruction due to land-use change. Natural grasslands are still being turned into arable land and built-up areas, and extensive agricultural land is being converted into forms of more intensive agriculture and parts into forest... More »

Measures to Enhance Implementation of the Convention

Implementation of the NBSAP

In May 2011, the European Union adopted a new strategy 'Our life insurance, our natural capital: an EU biodiversity strategy to 2020' (COM 2011/244 final). The Strategy lays down the framework for EU action over this decade in order to meet the commitments made by EU leaders in March 2010, in particular the 2020 headline target: “Halting the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystem services in the EU by 2020, and restoring them in so far as feasible, while stepping up the EU contribution to averting global biodiversity loss”; and the 2050 vision: “By 2050, European Union biodiversity and the ecosystem services it provides – its natural capital – are protected, valued and appropriately restored for biodiversity's intrinsic value and for their essential contribution to human wellbeing and economic prosperity, and so that catastrophic changes caused by the loss of biodiversity are avoided”... More »

Actions taken to achieve the 2020 Aichi Biodiversity Targets

The EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 is built around six mutually supportive targets which address the main drivers of biodiversity loss and aim to reduce the key pressures on nature and ecosystem services in the EU. Each target is further translated into a set of time-bound actions and other accompanying measures. The Strategy’s targets and actions fully cover the EU’s commitment to the 2020 Aichi Biodiversity Targets (see correspondence table).

TARGET 1: To fully implement the Birds and Habitats Directives (the EU nature legislation): Over the last 25 years, on the legal basis of the Birds and Habitats Directives, the EU has built up a vast network of 26,000 protected areas throughout its Member States... More »

Support mechanisms for national implementation (legislation, funding, capacity-building, coordination, mainstreaming, etc.)

The EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 underlines the need for close coordination between authorities at all levels – EU, national, sub-national – which are responsible for ensuring implementation of the Strategy, as well as the importance of stakeholders' involvement in implementation (including business and society at large)... More »

Mechanisms for monitoring and reviewing implementation

The EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy and related targets are underpinned by the EU 2010 Biodiversity Baseline which provides facts and figures on the state and trends of the different biodiversity and ecosystem components, and thereby factual information for measuring and monitoring progress in the EU from 2011 to 2020. To further ensure that the EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 is implemented based on comprehensive and robust information, EU Member States, with the assistance of the European Commission, are committed to the Mapping and Assessment of Ecosystems and their Services (MAES) in their national territory by 2014, assessing the economic value of such services, and promoting the integration of these values into accounting and reporting systems at EU and national levels by 2020.

A coherent framework for monitoring, assessing and reporting on progress in implementing the EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 is currently being developed... More »

National Contacts

Full details of national contacts »

Convention on Biological Diversity

Mr. François Wakenhut
CBD Primary NFP
Ms. Julie Raynal
CBD Secondary NFP, SBSTTA NFP
Ms. Laure Ledoux
Resource Mobilization FP
Mr. Matthias Leonhard Maier
Traditional Knowledge NFP
Ms. Alicja Kozlowska
ICNP ABS NFP
Mr. Adrian Peres
GTI NFP
Ms. Karin Zaunberger
GSPC NFP
Ms. Rania S. Spyropoulou
CHM NFP
Mr. Hugo-Maria Schally
ICNP ABS NFP

Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety

Mr. Joachim Kreysa
BCH NFP
Ms. Ella Strickland
Cartagena Protocol Primary NFP

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  • United Nations
  • United Nations Environment Programme