Implementation of the NBSAP
Liechtenstein has developed a National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (2010). Strategic goals that have been set in this regard include: conservation of habitats and the promotion and upgrading of current habitats; conservation of species; conservation of landscape, forest and soil; and the incorporation of more nature in the utilized landscape.
The Development Concept for Nature and Agriculture is being implemented as the framework for the development of natural values. The starting point for developing this concept is the legal obligation for a nature and landscape protection concept. The goal is to present the policy tasks, development intentions, and positions in the two specialized areas of "nature and landscape" and "agriculture" and to jointly establish a vision for development.
Actions taken to achieve the 2020 Aichi Biodiversity Targets
Nature protection areas and forest protection areas comprise 13% of the country's territory. As a basis for assessing the potential of near-natural areas worthy of protection, the Inventory of Nature Priority Areas (1992) is used. A comparison of the current status with the inventoried areas shows that there is still potential for placement under protection. Comprehensive inventories of the plant and animal groups existing in Liechtenstein are available. For several groups of species, Liechtenstein maintains its own Red Lists compiled according to IUCN criteria. Liechtenstein has also supported the project "Conservation of the Genetic Diversity of Cultivated Plants” since 2001. Dedicated inventories have been compiled for fruit varieties, grapevines, vegetable varieties, and specifically for "Rhine Valley corn", a regional corn variety.
The conservation of the environment and promotion of responsible and sustainable treatment of natural resources are focus areas of Liechtenstein's International Humanitarian Cooperation and Development (IHCD). The Office for Foreign Affairs funds various projects related to the environment and sustainable development. The regional focus lies on mountain areas in the South Caucasus. In thematic terms, the focus lies on the preservation of biodiversity, the promotion of energy efficiency, the re-naturalisation of rivers as wells as on the combat of soil erosion. In addition, the Liechtenstein Development Service (LED) engages in development cooperation in rural regions of several focus countries. The goals are to improve rural development and food security through sustainable farming methods. Liechtenstein's engagement includes financial support as well as staffing support by carrying out projects and providing experts in the Carpathians, the Caucasus, and Central Asia and Africa. In 2013, Liechtenstein spent CHF 25.2 million on IHCD. Liechtenstein’s ODA percentage was 0.69 in 2011 which corresponds to the sixth rank worldwide.
Support mechanisms for national implementation (legislation, funding, capacity-building, coordination, mainstreaming, etc.)
It is of utmost importance to Liechtenstein to conserve its biological diversity. Liechtenstein's goal in this regard is set out in the Law on the Protection of Nature and Landscape: "The entire area of habitats shall be protected and restored where necessary”. Other pillars are the Forestry Act, the Water Protection Act, the Fishery Act, and the Agriculture Act. To implement their provisions, numerous instruments are used in the biodiversity-relevant sectors. Various inventories aim to conserve natural values. Red Lists provide information on the degree of threat to animal and plant species. Nature and forest protection areas are established to conserve flora and fauna as well as genetic diversity.
Despite the small size of the country, international cooperation plays an important role. Liechtenstein provides financial as well as practical support by seconding experts or carrying out concrete projects within the framework of multilateral cooperation. The Minister for Infrastructure, Environment and Sport coordinates responsibilities on environmental issues and sustainable development. Regional cooperation with the neighbouring countries of Switzerland and Austria is especially important.
For education in the field of environment and sustainable development, the Law on the Protection of Nature and Landscape additionally requires the promotion of nature and environmental education. Today, the subject "Humans and Environment" is a fixed component in the curriculum of mandatory school education. Examples of public outreach include public events such as annual forest tours, conducted by the municipal forestry operations, actions of the environmental commissions of the municipalities, reports in the Liechtenstein daily newspapers and several publications.
Relations between Liechtenstein and Switzerland are very close. The two countries have concluded numerous bilateral agreements. The most important of these is the Customs Treaty, which forms the basis for legal adjustments and harmonization that go far beyond its actual scope of application, including in economic and social law. Relations with the EU are characterized by intensive cooperation. Since 1995, Liechtenstein has been linked with the European Union (EU) through the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA). Liechtenstein also participates actively and regularly in bodies such as the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) Working Group on the Environment, the European Environment Agency and programs within the INTERREG framework.
Mechanisms for monitoring and reviewing implementation
Liechtenstein employs three tools for evaluating environmental effects: Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA), the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and intervention procedures under the Nature Protection Act. The assessment procedures have different fields of application, but their functions complement each other.