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20.05.2015

EU nature protection

New report must focus attention on need to defend EU rules on nature and birds

The European Commission today presented its State of Nature report, which looks at the status of species and habitats protected under EU legislation on birds and nature over a 6 year period (2007-12). The report underlined concerns about the endangered status of species and habitats, as well as the EU's goal of halting biodiversity loss. Commenting on the report, Green environment spokesperson Bas Eickhout said:

“This report should be a warning signal for European policy makers about the need to redouble our efforts to protect our indigenous nature and address biodiversity loss. With some in the European Commission sharpening their knives ahead of a review of EU legislation on birds and habitats, this report should serve as a rallying call to ensure these essential rules are not just maintained but properly enforced."

Green environment spokesperson Benedek Javor added:

"While EU rules on birds and habitats have helped improve the status of some species, it is clear that many habitats and species are still in precarious situations. Despite some local improvements the majority of habitats and species in Europe have an unfavourable conservation status and the main EU target of 'halting the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystem services' by 2020 will not be achieved if the efforts are not upscaled. The report underlines the numerous, manmade threats to habitats and it is clear that more needs to be done to address this. Ahead of the mid-term review of the EU's biodiversity strategy and with EU rules on birds and habitats in the line of fire, this report could not have come at a more timely moment. We hope its findings will be central to considerations on these issues."