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You are here: Home / Data and maps / Indicators / Public awareness / Public awareness (SEBI 026) - Assessment published May 2010

Public awareness (SEBI 026) - Assessment published May 2010

Topics: ,

Generic metadata

Topics:

Biodiversity Biodiversity (Primary topic)

Tags:
biodiversity | natura 2000
DPSIR: Response
Typology: N/A
Indicator codes
  • SEBI 026
Dynamic
Temporal coverage:
2007
Geographic coverage:
Austria Belgium Bulgaria Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark EFTA4 Estonia Finland France Germany Greece Hungary Iceland Ireland Italy Latvia Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Malta Netherlands Norway Poland Portugal Romania Slovakia Slovenia Spain Sweden Switzerland United Kingdom
 
Contents
 

Key policy question: What is the level of public awareness about biodiversity in Europe? Are people willing to take action?

Key messages

Two-thirds of EU citizens do not know the meaning of the word 'biodiversity', let alone understand what the threats and challenges to its conservation are. Most EU citizens have never heard of the Natura 2000 network (80 %). However, over two-thirds of EU citizens report personally making efforts to help preserve nature.

Awareness of the Natura 2000 Network, share of respondents

Note: How to read the graph: 81 % of EU citizens have never heard of Natura 2000.

Data source:

Gallup Organization, Flash Eurobarometer Series No. 219, 2007.

Downloads and more info

Familiarity with the term 'biodiversity' in the EU-27

Note: How to read the graph: 34 % of EU citizens have never heard of biodiversity.

Data source:

Gallup Organization, Flash Eurobarometer Series No 219, 2007.

Downloads and more info

Key assessment

A recent survey(1) showed that only about onethird of EU citizens know the meaning of the word 'biodiversity' and few feel well informed about the issue.

Two-thirds of EU citizens do not know the meaning of the word 'biodiversity', let alone understand the threats and challenges to its conservation. That does not mean, however, they are unaware of environmental matters. When the issue is explained to them, over two-thirds consider the loss of biodiversity a serious problem, albeit more so at the global rather than the local level. The main threats to biodiversity identified by Europeans (pollution and man-made disasters) indicate that the level of understanding of the problem is still inadequate.

The survey also reveals that Europeans are unaware of what the EU is doing to save biodiversity: Only one in five has ever heard of Natura 2000, the EU's main programme for biodiversity conservation, and only 6 % of respondents indicated they really knew what Natura 2000 meant. Most EU citizens have never heard of the Natura 2000 network (80 %). The Natura 2000 programme needs urgent attention as far as communication to the public is concerned.

If the survey is repeated at regular intervals, it will be possible to identify trends and assess the effectiveness of existing and future policies aimed at raising public awareness and participation with regards to biodiversity. Currently the survey data are insufficient to determine trends of this sort.

(1) Gallup Organization, 2007. Flash Eurobarometer Series No. 219.
FURTHER INFORMATION

Data sources

  • No datasets have been specified.

More information about this indicator

See this indicator specification for more details.

Contacts and ownership

EEA Contact Info

Katarzyna Biala

Ownership

EEA Management Plan

2010 (note: EEA internal system)

Dates

Filed under: ,

Comments

European Environment Agency (EEA)
Kongens Nytorv 6
1050 Copenhagen K
Denmark
Phone: +45 3336 7100