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European Commission Launches New “European Natura 2000 Award”

Natura_2000_AwardThe European Commission has launched a new Award designed to celebrate and promote best practices for nature conservation in Europe.

The European Natura 2000 Award aims to bring the success of the network to the public’s attention and to demonstrate its importance for protecting biodiversity across Europe.

The Award, which will be an annual event, is open to any entity involved in the implementation of activities related to the management of Natura 2000. Local and other authorities and businesses, land owners, NGOs, educational institutions and individuals from all 28 EU Member States are all eligible to apply for one of the five categories of the award: Conservation, Socio-economic benefits, Communication, Reconciling interests/perceptions and Networking and cross-border cooperation.

Natura_2000_Award_1_The call for applications was launched on 16 December 2013 with a deadline for the submission of applications 18 February 2014.

The winners will be announced at a high level ceremony in Brussels in May 2014 where they will receive a trophy, along with a symbolic prize of 2,000 euros. This will be followed by local events in the winners’ countries organized with the support of the Commission. More information is available on the Award website.

The European Commission aims for the Award to prove to be an effective tool in raising awareness of Natura 2000 and demonstrate its central role in conserving and sustainably managing Europe’s unique nature.

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