EUROPARC’s Position on the EU Targets for Protected Areas

Parc naturel régional de Brière (FR) © Photo Jean Pierre Saliou

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The new EU 2030 Biodiversity Strategy sets ambitious goals to stop biodiversity loss and bring nature back into our lives. Find here EUROPARC’s Position Paper on the EU targets for Protected Areas, developed with 17 other members of the European Habitat Forum (EHF).

Towards the implementation of the EU 2030 Protected Area Targets

We are pleased to share here the position paper we recently adopted on the EU targets for Protected Areas, contained in the 2030 EU Biodiversity Strategy.

EUROPARC very much welcomes the high level of ambition contained in the EU Strategy, but an effort is now needed to ensure its effective implementation.

A series of questions come up as soon as we start looking at the document from a practical perspective:

  • What priority measures to improve management effectiveness of the existing protected areas?
  • Targeting to protect 30% of EU land and sea, which areas should be taken into account?
  • What role for Natura 2000 areas?
  • Which criteria to define strict protection?

With this document we therefore propose, to the European Commission and Member States, a series of recommendations, criteria and priorities to interpret the Protected Areas’ targets and pave the way towards their implementation.

EUROPARC and other members of the European Habitat Forum urge that:

  • Management effectiveness of Protected Areas needs to be improved.
  • The actual protection of existing and new Protected Areas needs to be prioritized.
  • At least 30% of EU’s land AND see area needs to be legally protected
  • Ecological corridors need to be integrated to ensure a true Trans-European Network
  • At least a third of EU’s Protected Areas need to be strictly protected
  • The efforts need to be shared across Member States

The position paper illustrates what must be done to reach the Protected Area targets at both national and biographical level.

Read the position paper here

All contributing organisations

This position paper was developed in partnership and through a constructive dialogue with many other major environmental organisations from across Europe. We are keen to hear also your views and any further inputs you might have.

Please feel free to share thoughts and reflections, writing to