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Highlight Protected areas cover a quarter of Europe's land and almost 6 % of regional seas
Protected areas cover more than 1 000 000 km2 of land and more than 340 000 km2 of coastal and marine ecosystems in Europe, according to the latest data. These areas are vitally important for protecting the continent’s most vulnerable species, habitats and marine life.
Located in News
Highlight Finding Europe's quiet areas
At least 110 million people are adversely affected by noise from Europe’s busiest roads alone. People need to escape this pollution and access quiet places to work, relax and live a healthy life. Such ‘quiet areas’ should be protected under EU legislation, but how does this work in practice?
Located in News
Highlight Our Natural Europe: conservation stories show importance of local action
When fishermen in the Koster Sea in Southern Sweden understood the value of the ecosystems beneath the waves, they voluntarily agreed to change fishing practices. The area became Sweden’s first marine national park in 2006.
Located in News
Highlight object code Protected areas have increased to cover one fifth of Europe’s land
More than 21 % of the land has some kind of protected status in the 39 countries which work with the European Environment Agency (EEA). However, only 4 % of the sea controlled by countries of the European Union is included within the Natura 2000 network of protected areas, according to a new report from the EEA.
Located in News
Figure Large protected areas in the Alps and the Carpathians
Located in Data and maps Maps and graphs
Figure National parks and nature reserves in Iceland
Map of Iceland showing parks/reserves, plus elevation, major roads and tracks
Located in Data and maps Maps and graphs
File Protecting the tree of life
Europe is a continent of breathtaking natural beauty and dramatic contrasts. The EU’s 27 Member States stretch from the frozen Arctic Circle in the north to the warm Mediterranean waters in the south. From the wave-lashed Atlantic coast in Ireland to the snow-capped Carpathian mountains in Romania, the EU includes a vast range of natural habitats and a great diversity of flora and fauna. Our natural heritage includes several thousand types of habitat, 520 species of bird, 10 000 plant species and at least 100 000 species of invertebrate. Yet, in comparison with other regions in the world, these numbers are relatively modest. Europe is the most urbanized and densely populated continent in the world. It is also one of the most polluted. These factors have taken their toll on the natural environment.
Located in Environmental topics Biodiversity Multimedia
European Environment Agency (EEA)
Kongens Nytorv 6
1050 Copenhagen K
Phone: +45 3336 7100