Our Natural Europe
Bruno Mendes does not own a car. Instead he travels mainly by public transport and rents from a car-share scheme when passenger services are impractical. He is very selective in his shopping, seeking labelled organic products where possible.
It's October, it's late in the season and it's been a bad year for mushrooms in Finland. Webcaps, a type of mushroom found particularly in the boreal and temperate forests of northern Europe, are no exception.
It's not quite five in the morning and we're walking along a track in the forest. The moon is high in the sky and provides enough light for us to see where we are going. A wolf howls in the distance. We have come to Poland's Białowieża Forest, the last refuge of the European bison, in the hope of getting a glimpse of this greatly endangered animal in its natural habitat.
Eyüp Yüksel was relaxing in Ankara on a warm autumn day in 2000, drinking tea from a traditional glass cup, when he heard the news that Tuz Gölü — Lake Tuz or Salt Lake — had been declared a protected area. As one of the staff of the Turkish Environmental Protection Agency for Special Areas (EPASA) he had been waiting and hoping for this decision but he was still excited to hear the announcement and concerned enough to wonder 'How can we manage such a big area?'
There may no longer be cod to fish in the Koster Sea but Evert Taube would be pleased to see that local people are working together to protect and enhance this area through the creation of a new national park. As a result, both locals and visitors can continue to enjoy much of the nature.
It's early September and we are driving south from the Romanian city of Timişoara to try to catch a glimpse of the red-footed falcon (Falco verpertinus). If we are lucky, we hope to see one or two before night-fall.
Philippe Mestelan is an agri‑environment officer in the Regional Nature Park of the Bauges Massif in eastern France not far from the borders with Switzerland and Italy. In 2006 he had a great idea to restore the memory of the meadows he remembered from his youth. Inspired by an initiative launched in the German Länder, Philippe set a challenge for the local farmers to improve species diversity in their meadows. Little did he know that his idea would quickly grow into a national and international competition.
For references, please go to www.eea.europa.eu/soer or scan the QR code.
This briefing is part of the EEA's report The European Environment - State and Outlook 2015. The EEA is an official agency of the EU, tasked with providing information on Europe’s environment.
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