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Biodiversity

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Biodiversity embraces the variety of genes, species and ecosystems that constitute life on Earth. We are currently witnessing a steady loss of biodiversity, with profound consequences for the natural world and for human well-being. The main causes are changes in natural habitats. More

Key facts and messages
The main EU target of 'halting the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystem services' by 2020 remains a serious challenge. more
Europe's natural capital is under growing cumulative pressure from intensive agriculture, fisheries and forestry, and urban sprawl. A substantial volume of relevant EU legislation already exists but lacks adequate integration in sectoral policies.... more
The demands of a growing global population with rapidly changing consumption patterns for food, mobility and energy are exerting ever-increasing pressure on the Earth's ecosystems and their life-supporting services. In combination with climate... more
The total area of nationally designated protected areas currently covers about 21% of terrestrial territory and inland waters, although further expansion of the marine network is required to meet targets. more
Designation of protected areas is not a guarantee of biodiversity protection. Effective biodiversity conservation within protected areas also requires management with a focus on species, habitats and ecosystems; measures to tackle the causes... more
Exacerbated by climate change and continued pollution, rates of global habitat destruction and biodiversity loss are predicted to increase, including in Europe. Continued degradation of global ecosystems and their services will influence poverty... more
Europe's biodiversity continues to be eroded resulting in ecosystem degradation. Recent data show that 60% of species and 77% of habitats continue to be in unfavourable conservation status. Constant habitat loss, diffuse pollution, over-exploitation... more
Forests provide a range of ecosystem services from capturing and storing carbon to providing bio-fuel, timber as well as social benefits. However, our forests, which have increased in area by 17 million hectares since 1990, face growing pressure... more
The claims on forests services are increasing. Understanding the role of more than 14 million forest owners/managers is imperative to developing balanced, sustainable policy on forest resources. more
European Environment Agency (EEA)
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