What types of land were affected by land take in Europe?

Policy Question
  Indicator codes: CSI 014 , LSI 001

Key messages

(09 Aug 2019)

Despite a reduction in the last decade (land take was over 1000km2/year between 2000-2006), land take in EU28 still amounted to 539km2/year between 2012-2018.

The net land take concept combines land take with land return to non-artificial land categories (re-cultivation). While some land was re-cultivated in the EU-28 in the period 2000-2018, 11 times more land was taken.

Between 2000 and 2018, 78 % of land take in the EU-28 affected agricultural areas, i.e. arable lands and pastures, and mosaic farmlands.

From 2000 to 2018, land take consumed 0.6 % of all arable lands and permanent crops, 0.5 % of all pastures and mosaic farmlands, and 0.3 % of all grasslands into urban areas.

In proportion to their area, Cyprus, the Netherlands and Albania saw the largest amount of land take between 2000 and 2018.

The re-cultivation of land increased from 2012 to 2018, led by Luxembourg, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Belgium.  

The main drivers of land take during 2000-2018 were industrial and commercial land use as well as extension of residential areas and construction sites.


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