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Complementarity between national designations and international networks
The system of protected areas in Europe is complex, and in many cases, there is a complementarity and overlap between different designation‑types at various levels.
Located in Environmental topics An overview of Europe's protected areas Facts and figures
Protected areas
Located in Environmental topics Biodiversity An overview of Europe's protected areas
Directives of the European Union
Environmental policy instruments important for the establishment of protected areas in Europe.
Located in Environmental topics An overview of Europe's protected areas Policy framework
Conventions on European seas
Environmental policy instruments important for the establishment of protected areas in Europe.
Located in Environmental topics An overview of Europe's protected areas Policy framework
Other instruments
Environmental policy instruments important for the establishment of protected areas in Europe.
Located in Environmental topics An overview of Europe's protected areas Policy framework
Policy framework
European policy regarding protected areas is mostly the product of initiatives from two main sources: the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, and the European Union itself. However, other international conventions have also been promoting the creation of protected areas e.g. Ramsar Convention, World Heritage Convention, Bonn Convention.
Located in Environmental topics Biodiversity An overview of Europe's protected areas
Conventions at the global level
Environmental policy instruments important for the establishment of protected areas in Europe.
Located in Environmental topics An overview of Europe's protected areas Policy framework
Conventions at the European level
Environmental policy instruments important for the establishment of protected areas in Europe.
Located in Environmental topics An overview of Europe's protected areas Policy framework
Progress in the proposal and designation of sites
Protected areas have taken many forms historically, from medieval hunting reserves, to more modern national parks and nature reserves. These different forms reflected the different needs that protected areas were created to serve, whether it was protecting the resource of wild game, preserving natural beauty or, more recently, safeguarding biodiversity. The last century has seen a great increase in both the number of protected areas and the total surface area that has received protected designation.
Located in Environmental topics An overview of Europe's protected areas Facts and figures
IUCN management categories
According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) a protected area can include any area of sea, lakes, rivers or land that has been identified as important for conservation of nature, and managed for this purpose. Some protected areas allow industry, extensive agriculture or fishing to occur within their boundaries, while others prohibit all of these activities.
Located in Environmental topics An overview of Europe's protected areas Facts and figures
European Environment Agency (EEA)
Kongens Nytorv 6
1050 Copenhagen K
Denmark
Phone: +45 3336 7100