The EU passed a law to restore damaged nature

THEOver 80% of European habitats are in poor condition. The European Union adopted a regulation on nature restoration to contribute to the long-term restoration of damaged nature in the EU’s land and sea areas and to the achievement of climate and biodiversity targets. Let’s find out better what it is

Finally, a new specific action at Community level: the European Parliament has recognized that to combat it climate change and biodiversity loss It is necessary to restore our ecosystems.

The main provision of the new law requires all states to implement, in a mandatory manner, the necessary measures to restore the 20% of EU land and sea areas that have, to date, been damaged.

Ultimate goal? Reach 2050 with their total restoration

Even pollinating insects, as is rarely the case, occupy an armchair. Actually, actions are planned to improve their health and diffusion. Last but not least, to combat flooding and hydrogeological instability, the approved law sets new goals to expand the removal of unnecessary river barriers throughout the community.

Oceans: historic resolution passed to protect them


Oceans: historic resolution passed to protect them

However, there is one passage that we can assume was among the decisive ones. Also in the press release we read: “In addition, the proposed law does not require the creation of new protected areas in the EU nor does it prevent the construction of new renewable energy infrastructure’.

Why do they care to point out that the proposal “does not require the creation of new protected areas”?

Let’s take a step back and try to understand the European environmental regulatory framework!

Principles of environmental law such as “the polluter pays”, the precautionary principle or common but differentiated responsibilities have had a very important function in shaping and developing the new field of environmental law that has developed over the last fifty years. Environmental law was born as international law and reproduced at the regional level and then codified in the domestic legal system (such as Italian law).

In this context it was born Nature 2000 which, as confirmed by the website of the Ministry of Energy Security, is the main body of the policy of the European Union for the conservation of biodiversity. It is an ecological network spread throughout the territory of the Union, established in accordance with Directive 92/43/EEC “Habitats” to guarantee the long-term conservation of natural habitats and species of flora and fauna that are threatened or rare in the community.

Two very important directives converge in Natura 2000: the Birds Directive and the Habitats Directive mentioned above. The first is more strict and limited, the second broader and more flexible. Some provisions were merged and others were amended.

In any case, each State, knowing its territory well, is called upon to designate some special conservation areas

These are not strictly protected areas but, obviously, you are required to follow certain guidelines contained in the articles of the documents and the main focus remains that of ‘sustainable management’.

Therefore, the construction of factories, large factories and so on becomes more difficult and subject to many permits. For this reason we can conclude that the idea of ​​not forcing the creation of new protected areas, assuming that they intend them as Special Areas of Conservation, played a role in not leading many states to reject this new law.

Already the habitats directive, more flexible than the one on birds, has among its main pillars the assurance of environmental protection as well as economic sustainability. Natura 2000 expressly provides for exceptions in the case of specific economic interests or as stated in Article 6: “overriding reasons of overriding public interest”

The Green Deal also has among its aims the improvement of Natura 2000 provisions, so who knows if we are on the right track with this new law?


Federica Gasbarro works with The Wom independently and is in no way associated with the advertisements that may appear in this content.

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