Hans von Sonntag | 22.03. 2023

To survive the climate and nature crisis, many beautiful Portuguese landscapes full of diverse life desperately need sustainable reforestation. Duro area, Portugal, Autumn 2022, photo Hans von Sonntag


In the greater scheme of the EU Biodiversity Strategy 2030, the planned Nature Restoration Law is doubtless the chance of a decade to set a favourable course for Europe’s nature conservation efforts. But not everyone thinks fondly about it. There’s a lot of pressure to water down the proposal. And the argument isn’t only the trope that nature conservation risks food security (which is an utterly false statement). Europe’s nature needs every helping hand. Please support the European restoration Law by joining the #RestoreNature campaign. 

We at Eurosite believe that successful conservation cannot be achieved without the private sector. That’s why we run together with the European Landowner’s Organization (ELO) and other partners the LIFE European Networks for Private Land Conservation (ENPLC) project. We jointly released an open letter on the Nature Restoration Law with ELO. And that’s why we have various working groups that explicitly include private landowners, with the Agriculture, Biodiversity and Climate (ABC) working group at the forefront.  

Anton Gazenbeek, the working group’s chair, summarises here his thoughts about a field trip on nature restoration in rural areas at the last Eurosite Annual Meeting that took place in Larnaca, Cyprus, on 10 November 2022. 

At the same event, the hybrid Natura 2000 Monitoring and Protected Area Management Effectiveness Workshop at Larnaca (Cyprus), 9 November 2022, was about various problems Natura 2000 sites face across Europe. If you read the report, you’ll get a clear idea of why the Nature restoration Law proposal must become a success, as it says in the report: Unfortunately, reality still looks different. Despite available guidance, many Natura 2000 sites are still in inadequate conservation status.