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A chance for man and nature
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The Natura 2000 network 

Protecting and preserving our common European natural heritage is one of the major challenges we are faced with in the 21st century. Even though much has been achieved with previous strategies against the extinction of species and the loss of habitats, such as the designation of nature reserves or statutory restrictions on use, the overall effect has been insufficient.

Coordinated transnational protection measures covering large areas combined with a reorientation in land use is necessary for the long-term preservation of the diversity of European landscapes and of animal and plant species.
When the EU anchored the protection of endangered habitats, plants and animals in law under the heading of Natura 2000, it took the first step in this direction: in two Directives (Flora-Fauna-Habitat Directive (FFH for short) and Bird Protection Directive) all the habitats and species to be protected are listed; the implementation of the Directives lies with the individual Member States which are requested to nominate representative areas for protection. These areas are to become part of a Community-wide system. Hence, the creation of the Natura 2000 network is the most material element of the Community nature protection policy and poses a major challenge to all the Member States.

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Photo: Andrea Lichtenecker
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Photo: Judith Michaeler
 

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