Home » Spain achieves 9 finalist projects in the “Natura 2000” European Awards in its 2024 edition

Spain achieves 9 finalist projects in the “Natura 2000” European Awards in its 2024 edition

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The European Commission has chosen 27 finalists, from 96 eligible applications, involving 107 organizations from across Europe. The jury will choose a winner from each of the five categories.

  • Citizens can vote for their favorite project among the 27 finalists that the European Commission has selected to compete in the final until April 25
  • The projects are characterized by the protection of the biodiversity of the European Union while protecting the local economies of many rural areas.
  • The awards ceremony will take place on May 29 within the “Green Week of the European Union”

The European Commission (EC) has announced the 27 projects that will compete as finalists in the current 2024 edition of the “Natura 2000” Awards. Natura 2000 is a European ecological network of biodiversity conservation areas whose objective is to ensure the long-term survival of species and habitat types in Europe, helping to halt the loss of biodiversity. In fact, it is the main instrument for nature conservation in the European Union.

Thus, the finalists represent the best initiatives to protect biodiversity while promoting the development of local economies. It is not surprising, therefore, that some rural development aid funds in the CAP are indirectly related to Natura 2000 sites.

The Natura 2000 Awards consist of 5 categories:

  • Conservation on land
  • Marine conservation
  • Communication
  • Working together for nature
  • Cross-border cooperation

More him Citizen Awardwhich is public recognition of their favorite project. Finalists in all categories automatically participate in a public vote and the finalist with the highest number of votes wins the European Citizens’ Prize.

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This year, the voting It is open until 11:59 p.m. on April 25, 2024.

Spanish finalists

In this edition, the EC has chosen 27 finalists, from 96 eligible applications, involving 107 organizations from across Europe. The jury will choose a winner from each of the five categories. The winners will be announced at the Natura 2000 awards ceremony on May 29, 2024, within the EU Green Week 2024.

Regarding Spain, There have been 9 projects in which our country participates, either individually or in cooperation with other European partners:

1. Nature Guardians: improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the response to environmental crimes

Cross-border cooperation project between Spain and Portugal that successfully addressed the ineffective application of environmental legislation in Spain and Portugal, resulting in an increase in the number of convictions and fines imposed for illegal activities in Natura 2000 sites.

2. Grazing to preserve habitats and Natura 2000 species

Cross-border cooperation project between Spain and France that addresses the impacts of insufficient and overgrazing on semi-natural pastures, managing to restore 1,670 hectares of mountain pasture areas, as well as publishing a manual of best practices for the conservation of mountain pastures.

3. Amphibian Conservation

Spanish initiative that rescues amphibian larvae and offspring inside and outside the Sierra de Guadarrama, which has allowed the natural recolonization of 40 wetlands interconnected by various species of amphibians.

4. Awareness-raising and prevention of exotic invasive aquatic species in the Iberian Peninsula

Cross-border cooperation project between Spain and Portugal aimed at fighting invasive aquatic species. The work has introduced efficient river management strategies at Natura 2000 sites in Portugal and Spain, and its online detection system is applicable across Europe.

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5. European Land Care Association

Cross-border cooperation project between Spain, Belgium, Croatia, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Romania and Serbia. This initiative established a European network of landcare partnerships working with a wide range of stakeholders to preserve and restore biodiversity in European landscapes.

6. The Monachus Project: restoring and connecting European black vulture colonies

Spanish initiative that has successfully reintroduced black vulture populations to previously isolated populations in Spain and France.

7. The BlueLab project: a stewardship agreement for the conservation of the marine Natura 2000 area of ​​L’Albera

Spanish project that supports the competent authorities in conservation and community management efforts in an area of ​​special environmental interest: the Natura 2000 marine area of ​​L’Albera in Catalonia.

8. The Formentera Marine Management Board

An excellent example of networking and volunteering in Spain, the Marine Stewardship Boardwhich involves numerous stakeholders to ensure both development and nature conservation objectives for marine protected areas.

9. Nests for birds of prey

This initiative has proven to be an economical, long-lasting and environmentally friendly alternative to traditional control of rodent pests on agricultural land, more specifically the common vole, by providing support to birds of prey.

You can support Spanish projects by voting for them here.

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