Webinar: Marine Natura 2000 Sites

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Management challenges in Marine Natura 2000 Sites

  • Wednesday, 5th December 2018, 10:00 CET (Central Europe Time)
  • Register here

Over the years the EU has established an increasingly robust policy framework (Habitats & Birds directives and Marine Strategy Framework Directive) to address the multiple challenges facing its marine environment and to ensure a more sustainable ecosystems-based approach to the use of its marine resources.

The Habitats Directive lists nine marine habitat types and 16 species for which marine site designation is required, whilst the Birds Directive lists a further 60 bird species whose conservation requires marine site protection.

As its terrestrial counterpart, the marine environment is also divided in different biogeographical regions: Marine Atlantic, Marine Baltic, Marine Black Sea, Marine Macaronesian and Marine Mediterranean.

At the end of 2017, more than 3000 marine Natura 2000 sites have been designated, which cover more than 7% of the total EU marine area (over 400,000 km2).

In this webinar, we will get to know two of these designated sites, one from the Marine Atlantic region – the Isles of Scilly, presented by Tom Hoppe, from Isles of Scilly Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (IFCA) and one from the Marine Mediterraneanregion – the Portofino MPA  introduced by Valentina Cappanera,.

The webinar will be presented by Fotios Papoulia, policy officer from the EC DGENV, who will introduce the main priorities and challenges of Natura 2000 in the Marine Environment.

Case Study 1

Proactive management of fisheries within a Special Area of Conservation – the Isles of Scilly.

Future challenges to managing a site and making good decisions in the context of relatively poor knowledge.  

By Tom Hoppe, Chief Fisheries and Conservation Officer for the Isles of Scilly Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (IFCA)

The Isles of Scilly are an archipelago 40km from the mainland of Cornwall on the South West tip of England. The islands were designated as an SPA in 2001 and as an SPA in 2005. A Marine Conservation Zone comprising 11 ‘subsites’ was designated in 2013. The site has been designated for species such as reefs, seagrass beds, grey seals. The Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (IFCA) has responsibility for the management of fisheries within an area out to six nautical miles, in total 406 square kilometres of sea. Commercial fishing only takes place at a very low level of pressure, with 23 local boats primarily operating pots and nets.

Tom Hoppe will talk about the relationships between the different agencies involved and how they have operated within a new requirement to proactively manage fisheries within the SAC. He will mention the different pressures on this system and how they are managed; highlighting where this management is cultural, voluntary or through a regulation. He will also talk about future challenges to managing a site and making good decisions in the context of relatively poor knowledge.

Case Study 2

Italian MPAs and the management of Natura 2000 – the example of Portofino MPA

By Valentina Cappanera, Staff member of the Managing entity of the Portofino MPA

The management of marine Natura 2000 sites is not homogeneous at Italian level. However, in global terms, the current situation of marine Natura 2000 sites in Italy is not good and an alignment with other countries is needed. Portofino is the third smallest MPA in Italy; nevertheless, it has a really rich flora and fauna heritage but suffers a strong human frequentation.

As any other Italian MPA, Portofino has to carry on its conservation goals fitting the regulation with the necessity of protection of Natura 2000 sites. In her presentation, Valentina will tell us about their goals and efforts to regulate acess within the MPA.

The webinar will be held in English and have a duration of approximately 1:15 min. Participation is free but registration is necessary – you can register here.

Siggen Seminar 2019: Registrations are open

EUROPARC Youth Manifesto - Workshop II in Kalajoki, Finland June 2018 (©Rita Kovács)

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Siggen Seminar 2019

  • Youth involvement in Protected Areas
  • 18th – 21st March, Gut Siggen, Germany

Click on the image to Download the Youth Manifesto (English Version)

This year, continuing on from the launch of the YOUTH MANIFESTO, we will focus, in this 2 day seminar,  on working with youth. We will explore the new programme created by EUROPARC the Youth + programme and how this can be a model for working with 18-25year old in your park.

We will also hear from other youth programmes to gain new perspectives and ideas that will help you build a programme in your area. You will be welcome to bring your own ideas for a collective “surgery” where we can examine problems and challenges you may have and suggest solutions together.

The seminar is FREE to EUROPARC members (includes meals and accommodation), you need only cover your travel costs to Siggen.

By early 2019 the full programme will be launched.

Secure your place!

The seminar is FREE for members of the EUROPARC Federation. Participants will therefore ONLY cover their own travel to and from the event. Places are limited so please book early!


How to get to the Siggen Seminar Center? 

The Siggen Seminar Center belongs to the Alfred Toepfer Foundation and lies on the north-eastern coast of Germany in the county of Holstein. It is a 20 minute taxi ride from the nearest train station, Oldenburg (Holst), and a five-minute bike-ride to the nearest beach.

Please contact EUROPARC  with any questions you might have and download the pdf Directions to Siggen to learn how you can easily reach it by plane, train or car.

This activity is supported by:


The support of Alfred Toepfer Foundation is highly appreciated by EUROPARC Federation and the continuation of the annual seminars will ensure that all members can actively contribute to the ongoing strategic development of the Federation.

Seminar-Dialogue with the European Commission 2018 – registrations are open

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The voice of nature will be heard at the highest level in the European Commission: the EUROPARC Federation invites members to join the second Seminar-Dialogue, organised in close cooperation with the DG Environment (DG ENVI) and with the participation of DG Agriculture (DG AGRI) and DG Education and Culture (DG EAC). 

Seminar-dialogue with the European Commission 2018

Partnerships for biodiversity: European policies and the role of Protected Areas

  • 7th December 2018
  • 09:00 – 16:30
  • DG Environment, Avenue de Beaulieu 5, 1160 Brussels

On the 7th December, EUROPARC members will have the chance to sit with the European Commission to share their experience and needs for the effective management of Natura 2000. By bringing together representatives of the DG ENVI, DG AGRI and DG EAC and protected area professionals,

EUROPARC aims to highlight the contribution of Protected Areas to the achievement of the European policy goals, whilst giving the European Commission a clear insight of the challenges faced by professionals in the field.

The Seminar will count with interventions from EUROPARC members and from the different DGs, who will share the latest policy updates and funding opportunities. Following the successful Seminar-Dialogue organised last year, EUROPARC and DG Environment have set up a programme focused on four key areas:

  • Managing Natura 2000: funding, opportunities and challenges
  • Building partnerships for Sustainable Agriculture
  • Nature and Culture: Protected Areas connecting people to their heritage and identity
  • Youth involvement: the EUROPARC Youth Manifesto

The event will be anticipated by an internal meeting only for EUROPARC members, on Thursday 06.12.2018 between 15:00 and 18:00 at the EUROPARC Federation Brussels Office.

Would you like to participate?

Read the outcomes of the Seminar-Dialogue with DG Environment 2017 by clicking in the picture

Places are limited, but we look forward to welcoming as many members as possible to Brussels. Participation is free of charge but registration is mandatory. This event is specially addressed to EUROPARC members directly working with Protected Areas and European Commission officers.


Download the Programme

Nature and Culture in Dialogue – Registrations are open

Photo: German-Dutch Nature Park Maas-Schwalm-Nette

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The EUROPARC Federation and Interpret Europe are hosting a special event in Brussels as a celebration of the European Year of Cultural Heritage. How does natural heritage influence cultural identity? How can interpretation support Protected Areas better-connecting people to the story of their place and community?

  • 28th November, 15:00 – 17:30
  • European Commission –
  • Participation is free but registration is necessary. Please register here.

In an increasingly disconnected European society it is often by reconnecting to nature through our protected areas, that people can understand their culture once more.

Cultural Identity is rooted in the connection to the land and therefore interpretation of natural and cultural landscapes is something inherent in most protected areas of Europe. European Protected areas have an important function to deliver, through the work of guides, ranger and the parks messages itself. Cultural identity, on the other hand, is not always as fixed as it may seem… and interpretation can be a powerful tool to help communities appreciate their history, even if fractured by major forces such as war, translocation, politics, modern travel, and connectivity.

In the beginning of 2018, Interpret Europe and EUROPARC Federation announced a partnership focused on the role of natural heritage to explore cultural identity. Now, looking ahead on how to follow up after the European Year of Culture 2018,

we would like to present the results of our cooperation and with the participation of DG Environment and DG Education and Culture, discuss experiences and opportunities to link nature and culture against the heritage background.

Please register here

Download the programme here

Special Side event: Wednesday, 28th November 18:30

All participants are invited by Puglia Region (Italy) to attend to the presentation of the project “LandXcape – art, storytelling, landscape”. Regione Puglia in Bruxelles – Rue du Trone, 62 – 5° floor. Light refreshments will be offered.

Please send a confirmation until 26th November to [email protected]

The “Nature and Culture in Dialogue” is a celebration of the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018.

Following the motto: “Our heritage: where the past meets the future”, the aim of the Year is to encourage more people to discover and explore Europe’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and to reinforce a sense of belonging to a common European space. The Year will pursue an integrated approach to heritage, and put people at the centre.