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You are here: Home / Data and maps / Indicators / Public awareness / Public awareness (SEBI 026) - Assessment DRAFT created Nov 2010

Public awareness (SEBI 026) - Assessment DRAFT created Nov 2010

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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, 2010
Geographic coverage:
Austria Belgium Bulgaria Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Estonia Finland France Germany Greece Hungary Ireland Italy Latvia Lithuania Luxembourg Malta Netherlands Poland Portugal Romania Slovakia Slovenia Spain Sweden 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 (78 %). However, over two-thirds of EU citizens report personally making efforts to help preserve nature.

Familiarity with the term biodiversity (EU-27) in 2007 (left) and 2010 (right)

Note: How to read the graph: in 2010, 34 % of EU citizens have never heard of biodiversity.

Data source:

Gallup Organization, 2007. Flash Eurobarometer Series No 219

Gallup Organization, 2010. Flash Eurobarometer Series No. 290.

Downloads and more info

Awareness of the Natura 2000 Network (EU-27) in 2007 (left) and 2010 (right)

Note: How to read the graph: in 2010, 78 % of EU citizens have never heard of Natura 2000

Data source:

Gallup Organization, Flash Eurobarometer Series No 219, 2007.

Gallup Organization, 2010. Flash Eurobarometer Series No. 290.

Downloads and more info

Key assessment

Recent surveys (1) showed that only about one-third of EU citizens were familiar with the term ‘biodiversity’: more precisely, 38% of interviewees said they knew the meaning of the term (a three percentage point increase compared to 2007) and that few feel well informed about biodiversity loss.

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, although more so at the global rather than the local level. The main threats to biodiversity identified by Europeans both in 2007 and 2010 surveys – 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 8 % of respondents indicated they really knew what Natura 2000 meant (slight increase compared to the year 2007). Most EU citizens have never heard of the Natura 2000 network (78%). 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.


(1)   Gallup Organization, 2007. Flash Eurobarometer Series No. 219, Gallup Organization, 2010. Flash Eurobarometer Series No. 290.

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

2011 1.2.2 (note: EEA internal system)

Dates

Filed under: ,

Comments

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