EU NATURE CONSERVATION LEGISLATION
Biodiversity is one of the most important cases providing sustainable development and increasing human’s quality of life. Besides, it provides healthy ecosystems to help human to reduce and adapt to climate change and many services (food, fuel, fertile soils, clean air and water, raw materials). Although the loss of biodiversity means high costs for the society on the medium and long term, during the last Century this loss has increased exponentially. To halt the loss of biodiversity is one of the main challenges the humanity is facing. As a response, the European Union has adopted strong legislation to protect biodiversity. Birds and Habitats Directives, created by this aim are at the heart of EU’s policy on biodiversity conservation.
Ensures the protection of all the wild birds in the EU. The Directive bans activities that directly threaten birds (as the destruction of nests and taking of their eggs) and establishes rules limiting the number of bird species that can be hunted. It also identifies nearly 200 bird species and sub-species as particularly threatened and requires the Member States to designate Special Protection Areas (SPAs) in order to ensure that the most suitable territories for the conservation of those bird species plus migratory birds occurring in the EU are protected. These SPAs are part of the Natura 2000 ecological network set up under the Habitats Directive.
Directive 2009/147/EC of the European Parliamen (unofficial)
It was adopted in order to ensure the survival of Europe the most endangered and vulnerable species (around 1200 species of plants and animals other than birds) and habitat types. It’s main aim is to promote the maintenance of biodiversity, taking into account of economic, social, cultural and regional requirements. The protection provisions in the Directive are designed in a way to ensure conducive conservation of habitat types and species listed in the Annexes of the Directive. One of the most important of these conservation provisions is the establishment of the Natura 2000 ecological network.
Directive 92/43/EEC of the European Council (unofficial)