EUROPARC eNews November 2013
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In this issue:
  • Feature:  
    Children and nature: a healthy relationship?



11th – 22nd November 2013
COP19/CMP9 United Nations Climate Change Conference
Location: Warsaw, Poland

11-14th November
Surveillance and regulations in MPAs: how to maximize the efficiency and sustainability of actions

13-14th November
9th EWA Brussels Conference "Water - Investing Today for the Future"

13-16th November
The 4th International Conference on Tourism - 2013 CACTUS

15th November
Conference "Biodiversity & Health"

19th-20th November
International Conference on Air Quality Programmes

25th-26th November
European Biogeographic Seminar – The Alpine Seminar

2nd of December
European Realities of Responsible Tourism

Find more events and event details in our online calendar!



Synthesis Report of the UNEP/GEF Removing Barriers to Invasive Plant Management in Africa (RBIPMA) Project, implemented in four African countries (Ethiopia, Ghana, Uganda and Zambia) between 2005 and 2010/ By Gordon Boy Co-author Arne Witt/ The book reveals just how devastating the impacts of biological invasions can be, while showing how enhanced capacity is essential, if effective long-term measures are to be instituted to manage invasive alien plant species and their impacts.

Directory of Environment & Climate Change Foundations 2014
Provides a comprehensive guide to foundations, trusts, grant-making NGO's and other similar non-profit institutions involved in funding environment and climate change activity worldwide.

Wildlife comeback in Europe – The recovery of selected mammal and bird species 
The Zoological Society of London (ZSL), BirdLife International and the European Bird Census Council (EBCC) has just released the study ‘Wildlife Comeback in Europe’, which gathers relevant data about the distribution and abundance of selected species. Experts from across Europe worked to describe how, why and where 37 mammal and bird species have recovered over the past 50 years, providing important lessons for the conservation of these and other species.

A vision for a Wilder Europe
A call to action for all Europeans – politicians, businessmen, landowners, city dwellers, young and old to support a wilder world. Europe is highly diverse in its landscapes, habitats, cultures and development. While we are still rapidly losing species and natural ecosystems through urbanisation, infrastructure development, industrialisation of agriculture, forestry and fishery – new conservation opportunities are emerging. Additionally, there is a growing understanding of the imperative for wilderness. 

Experiencing nature in children’s summer camps: Affective, cognitive and behavioural consequences
The present study evaluates how a stay in a summer holiday camp changes children’s willingness to display ecological behavior and the affective and cognitive factors that may be responsible for this change. The study included two types of nature camps, one with an Environmental Education program and one without it, with an urban camp without EE as an additional control group. Nature experiences increased children’s emotional activity towards nature, their ecological beliefs and willingness to display ecological behavior. 

Proposal of a system for the integrated and comparative assessment of Protected Areas

Guidelines for applying Protected Area management categories 


Communications and Project coordination Agricultural biotech sector

Nutrition & Health Policies Officer
Ecologist – The Green Recruitment Company

Wildlife Assistant 
Policy Officer - Controlled Wood, Bonn, Germany
EU Advocacy Officer, Brussels, Belgium
Responsable des activités nautiques dans le cadre du Parc Naturel Régional Scarpe-Escaut 

Chargé(e) de communication - Parc naturel régional du Vercors

Brussels News

More citizens calling for greater nature protection!

Almost nine out of ten Europeans believe that biodiversity loss – the decline and possible extinction of animal species, flora and fauna, natural habitats and ecosystems in Europe – is a problem, according to a new survey. Environment Commissioner Janez Potočnik said:
 "It's good to see that public opinion is increasingly aware of how important biodiversity is. I hope political leaders will translate this concern into tangible action to deliver what we have agreed in the EU Biodiversity Strategy." Read More
Info day - EU Funding for the Environment
watch online!  
12 November ’13

The European Commission is organising an InfoDay on 12 November on the Horizon 2020 Societal Challenge 5: Climate Action, Environment, Resource Efficiency and Raw Materials. The event aims to highlight the novelties of the 2014-2015 Work Programme and will provide guidance on the preparation and submission of proposals.

EU Natura 2000 awards coming soon!

The European Commission will be launching next month a Natura 2000 award scheme to value and recognise excellences at European level on the management of Natura 2000 sites.  There will be 5 categories: Communication; EU added value; Cross border cooperation; Achievement of conservation objectives and Conflict resolution. Most parks of Europe are in charge of the management of N2000 sites: a great chance to highlight and value at highest EU level your experiences and good practices! So get ready to apply!

Working together for Natura 2000

A new platform is being established at European level to support Natura 2000 site managers, policymakers, civil society organizations and land managers in their efforts to achieve favourable conservation status of Europe’s most precious habitats. We encourage all EUROPARC members to participate. It is really important to have your voice heard.  Register and log in here

EUROPARC has re-activated its long-lasting cooperation with the Council of Europe to further support the work of Protected Areas in the continent. The main themes that we wish to jointly develop are: transboundary cooperation, the European Day of Parks and the Protected Areas Diploma.  

For the complete overview and most up to date news from Europe, visit our website, the Brussels news section!


Une reconnaissance européenne pour le Parc Naturel transfrontalier du Hainaut 

Les représentants du Parc naturel régional Scarpe-Escaut et du Parc naturel des Plaines de l’Escaut, composant ensemble le Parc naturel transfrontalier du Hainaut, ont reçu le 12 octobre dernier,  le certificat « Transboundary Parks » de la main du Président d’EUROPARC, M. Thomas Hansson. C’était en Hongrie, lors de la cérémonie de clôture de la Conférence annuelle de la Fédération EUROPARC, qui rassemble des centaines de gestionnaires d’espaces naturels de toute l’Europe.  Avec « Transboundary Parks », le Parc naturel transfrontalier du Hainaut voit reconnus l’expérience et le dynamisme de sa coopération et rejoint ainsi le réseau de 9 espaces naturels transfrontaliers européens certifiés. 
Plus d'informations
La Cets al Parlamento Europeo - Il resoconto di una giornata indimenticabile 

Si è conclusa con grande soddisfazione di tutti i partecipanti la lunga giornata dedicata agli accreditamenti Cets a Bruxelles. Qui, infatti, nella sede di rappresentanza della Regione Marche presso il Parlamento Europeo, si è svolto il VII Meeting europeo della rete dei parchi Cets, a conclusione del quale era in programma la cerimonia di certificazione 2013, con l’europarlamentare francese Gaston Franco. Il grande sforzo di Europarc Federation e del suo rappresentante a Bruxelles (il dottor Federico Minozzi) nell’organizzazione dei due eventi è stato largamente ripagato. Ampia la partecipazione, con rappresentanze di parchi e operatori turistici di Finlandia, Regno unito, Lettonia, Francia, Italia, Belgio, Svezia, Spagna, Portogallo. In totale oltre cento persone
 La delegazione italiana, di gran lunga la più numerosa con una trentina addetti ai lavori, ha offerto molteplici testimonianze e raccolto tanti riconoscimenti per il lavoro svolto. 

Maggiori informazioni
Yorkshire Dales, National Park Authority named by Lonely Planet as the third best region in the world to visit

And a photo of the fantastic scenery of Swaledale has been used on the organisation’s website to explain just why the county is on the international list of top places to see in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2014 book. Lonely Planet contributor Tom Hall is quoted in today’s (29 October) Yorkshire Post as saying of the county: "It has a great mixture of history, shops and good cities, and a wealth of outstanding outdoor areas – the Yorkshire Dales National Park being chief among them as well as less highlighted places like Ilkley Moor." The county is only beaten by Sikkim in India and the Kimberley in Australia and in turn sits above Texas, Mallorca and Hunan in China.  
Read More
Dear Readers

This month with put our special focus on the benefits of children connecting with nature, celebrating the Universal Children’s Day (UNICEF) on November 20. Zenobia Barlow, one of the pioneers in creating models of schooling for sustainability and ecology, said: "Children are born with a sense of wonder and an affinity for nature. Properly cultivated, these values can mature into ecological literacy, and eventually into sustainable patterns of living." EUROPARC recognizes this important connection, and necessity of environmental education at the young stage, therefore this month we have collected some of the interesting findings and thinking on this topic. But not only that, don’t miss other topics that benefit your Protected Area and your community. We are also bringing you the latest news from the EU and our partner organisation. This eNews is to benefit you, our members, if you have any suggestions or material you would like to share with us, please do so. 
Don’t forget to follow our regular updates on Facebook and Twitter.
Download and send our monthly eCards, share your love of Europe’s nature!

Hope you enjoy reading.
Your EUROPARC team

Next month…
In the upcoming eNews we will focus on Mountain Protected Areas and the challenges they face, celebrating the International Mountain Day on December 11. Is your area a Mountain Protected Area? Share with us stories on how you preserve and protect our precious mountain regions in Europe! Are you a passionate climber or hiker, tell us what inspires you with these magical areas!  Please send us your updates to no later than November 25. 

EUROPARC 2013: A show of hands for another 40 years Working for Nature!
300 experts from 34 countries, responsible for managing Europe’s natural resources met in the Hortobagyi National Park, Hungary, last month to plan the future and seek solutions for the integrated management of Protected Areas. The event that brought them together was the EUROPARC Conference 2013, celebrating 40 years Working for Nature. Being the largest networking opportunity in Europe of its kind, this year we introduced a parallel conference for youth participants, aged 17- 25. The aim of all EUROPARC conferences is to deliver innovative, forward-looking approaches that guarantee the effective sustainable management of Protected Areas in Europe. This year the conference was hosted by the UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site, Hortobágy National Park in Hungary´s Pannonian region. The conference was dedicated to ´40 years Woking for Nature´ and the achievement of Europe’s Protected Areas to society over that time. Read More. The biggest EUROPARC members meeting, the General Assembly, also took place, where the future of EUROPARC was discussed. Our council and President, Mr. Thomas Hansson have recently also released a communiqué on the decisions that have taken place this October in Debrecen, Hungary. For more information on the decisions takes click here.  Take a look at the photo library from the conference!

Save the date for our next year's conference in Killarney, Ireland,  28th September - 1st October 2014! 
1st EUROPARC Youth Conference
a resounding success! 
The voices of the young people of Europe gave a loud and clear message to European managers and directors of Protected Areas in Hungary last week; “We want to be heard!”  The youth conference was organized by the EUROPARC Federation to run alongside its 40th Anniversary celebration conference held in Debrecen, Hungary in partnership with Hortobágy National Park Directorate. Young people from all over Europe applied to attend the conference and had the full endorsement of their park directors to represent them. All of the participants have been previously involved in EUROPARC Junior Ranger activities. Read more


 /  Neuigkeiten   /   Nouvelle / 

Our Health and Protected Areas Working Group needs your help now to advance the work!
We all agree that physical activity and contact with nature is essential for good health. ‘Green exercise’ can make a significant and sustained contribution to physical and mental health and well-being. However, we need to build the evidence base to demonstrate public health benefits. We are therefore looking for several case studies to show the work that protected areas are doing in the area of health and to demonstrate the significant contribution they make to human health and well-being. The case studies, which should illustrate the development of Policy, Evidence or the Delivery of a project programme, will be used to promote the work and profile of protected areas in this area, and we hope also internationally. They will also form part of a tool kit that the working group is planning. If you are working in this area we would love to hear from you!
Download here a template that gives you more information on the sort of examples that we are looking for. Although the template is in English, we would be pleased to hear from you in any language! Please send your case studies to Richard Blackman of the EUROPARC Atlantic Isles Section at  or contact him if you would like further information.

8th European Charter Network Meeting and Charter Awards 2013

EUROPARC brought Protected Areas managers, tourism experts and local businesses from all over Europe to Brussels - to share good practices on tourism management, brainstorm for innovative ideas and strategies, and to honour sustainable tourism achievements across Protected Areas in Europe.  Celebrating 40 Years Working for Nature at the heart of the EU institutions, this year brought a brighter light to the Charter for Sustainable Tourism Awards and all our Charter Protected Areas.  Read more  

Our latest Charter eNews has been published last month… Autumn is the time when it gets quieter in most Protected Areas around Europe. It's the time to reflect what happened during the summer and to find new ideas for the seasons to come. May the examples of our Charter areas be a source of inspiration for you! See the newsletter

Transboundary Programme and IUCN WCPA Transboundary Specialist group cooperating 

EUROPARC’s TransParcNet member, Kari Lahti from Metsähallitus Natural Heritage Services, represented EUROPARC at the “International workshop on defining transboundary conservation principles” of WCPA Transboundary Specialist Group last month in Thayatal National Park.  EUROPARC and its Transboundary Working Group hope to strengthen the European Transboundary perspective by contributing to WCPA’s Best Practice Guideline through delivery of good practice examples from the TransParcNet network. Informational material for EUROPARC Transboundary Parks Programme is being translated into many European languages with the help of EUROPARC’s Transboundary Areas. Follow the latest news of the Transboundary areas, here!

Benefits of volunteering
for Protected Areas

The EU-GRUNDTVIG Multilateral Project “Volunteer Management in European Parks” is soon coming to an end. The 3 year project concludes with diverse new products that have been developed, made available and will be promoted for free through the EUROPARC network for all our members. These will help, to support volunteer coordinators in parks, both in their daily work on the ground and in contributing further to a culture of active citizenship and lifelong learning in Protected Areas by means of professional and integrative volunteer management. Volunteering in Protected Areas provides a great learning experience and a chance to discover some of the most beautiful corners of Europe. Read the stories on volunteering at: If your Protected area is interested on volunteering programmes, contact Federico Minozzi or Bettina Soethe at EUROPARC Germany.  

Efficient Managers
for Efficient Natura 2000 Network

Romaina was a popular destination for EUROPARC this month, as a meeting for the LIFE EME project was held early this month. Project leader ProPark and project partners, among which EUROPARC,  met to discuss the status of the project, future actions and several other issues. The aim of this project is to increase management capacity and support for Natura 2000 sites in Romania by developing the communication skills of site managers and by supporting the integration of biodiversity concerns in territorial planning processes in and around Natura 2000 sites. Find out more about the project here.

EUROPARC’s Director, Ms Carol Ritchie, a keynote speaker at the 2nd European Ecotourism Conference

EUROPARC was invited to participate in this event with the Director making a keynote speech describing the Protected Area's journey to sustainable development and what is yet needed. Further Paulo Castro, EUROPARC Treasurer and Charter supremo led a workshop looking at how the Charter for Sustainable Tourism Protected Areas can be aligned to other global and European systems.
This conference was a great occasion to prove the importance of sustainable management of tourism activities in Protected Areas. EUROPARC among 80 participants from 22 European countries, including ecotourism and sustainable tourism associations and networks, ecotourism businesses, education institutions, experts and consultants on ecotourism.

EUROPAC was both material in creating and also endorsed the Declaration of the 2nd European Ecotourism Conference and committed ourselves to use it as a guide for future action, which stated Declaration of the 2nd European Ecotourism Conference.
Read More

Following the deliberations and discussion of the participants of the 2nd European Ecotourism Conference…..
We, the participants, recognise these common needs:
- To bring sustainability and nature conservation to the destination region;
- To develop a common understanding of ecotourism in Europe as a conservation and development tool;
- To  co-ordinate communications  for  eco-tourism destinations  in order to attract guests;
- And to communicate the benefits of ecotourism to policy and decision makers.

We agree this ecotourism destination concept
- Ecotourism destination in Europe should have:
- A Protected Area associated with the destination;
- A critical mass of local ecotourism businesses;
- A sustainability plan under implementation, in developing ecotourism;
- Nature and local culture as the main ingredients in product development and marketing;
- Active participation of local communities, empowered through education and awareness raising, based on shared values.   

More Information

Members and Network 

/ Mitglieder und Netzwerk  /   Membres et Réseau / 

Introducing LIFE - What is in it for our Protected Areas?   

LIFE: improving nature conservation and environmental protection over 20 years…

Europe's wildlife and natural resources have benefited from LIFE funding for over 20 years. In 1992, LIFE, the EU's funding instrument for the environment, began to co-finance projects involved in implementing European environmental policy. Much of the initial work concentrated on launching actions through the then 12 Member States of the EU to establish an embryonic Natura 20001 network. Read more

How is LIFE using social media: Commonly referred to as 'social media', 'social networking' or 'web 2.0' technology tools, new internet-based communications platforms continue to grow in relevance for LIFE projects. Today's social media revolution is being driven by the new type of communication opportunities offered by tools such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Flickr, Pinterest, Instagram and others. Their biggest strengths are their (relatively) low cost, their accessibility and their 'interactivity'. Read More 
LIFE lessons and good practices
The Good Examples of Social Media pages in the LIFE Communications Toolkit provide further examples of how projects and beneficiaries can make use of the advantages of social media in their own communications activities, in particular the interactive element of these new platforms. Case studies

How to Save our Biodiversity? 
Slow Food recently published an interesting series of booklets in different languages, explaining the meaning of biodiversity and how it relates to our daily food, and describe, with concrete examples and practical activities, how to protect them through Slow Food's Ark of Taste and Presidia projects. Download the booklets here and pass them on to your friends, producers, chefs, students or anyone interested in protecting the incredible world of food biodiversity that surrounds us.
Coastal zone, such as Marine Protected Areas matter for the climate change!  
Coastal Forum confirms nature-based solutions are key for climate change adaptation (IUCN). More than 200 delegates representing local communities, government agencies, academics, NGOs and media from Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam gathered together at the Second Annual Coastal Forum from 15-18 October in Soc Trang Province, Vietnam, to share experiences, lessons learned and best practices for climate change adaptation in the coastal zone, highlighting nature-based solutions and ecosystem-based adaptation approaches. Read More
Interested in continuing your education in the environmental field?
Join the master programme in World Natural Heritage Management 2014: Knowledge and management of UNESCO World Natural Heritage Sites (Dolomites and other mountain sites)
The Master WNHM is promoted by the Autonomous Province of Trento and it is supported by the partnership between tsm|step–Landscape and Environment School of Government and University of Turin. The Master’s programme is thought for  managers, experts, researchers, professionals and officials of public and private institutions and organizations, graduates with a bachelor’s or master’s degree interested in the management of natural Sites. More information
Parc National des Cévennes  - Une plaque Unesco sur l'Aigoual

La plaque officielle "Causses et Cévennes, Patrimoine Mondial" a été posée le jeudi 3 octobre à 16h30 à l'Observatoire météorologique du Mont Aigoual en présence de Guillaume Lambert, Préfet de la Lozère, coordonnateur du Bien Causses et Cévennes. Le territoire des Causses et des Cévennes a été inscrit en juin 2011 sur la liste du Patrimoine mondial de l'Unesco, comme paysage culturel de l’agro-pastoralisme méditerranéen. Plus grand paysage culturel jamais inscrit en Europe, ce territoire couvre 3 000 km² environ. Deux massifs constituent des éléments forts des paysages classés, dont un gardois, le Mont Aigoual, culminant à 1 597m. Un patrimoine d’une valeur inestimable que les quatre départements des Causses et des Cévennes s’attachent à préserver, valoriser et faire vivre à travers des actions collectives et concertées. Plus d'informations

EUROPARC Consulting
COOL Tourism project makes stately progress
EUROPARC Consulting and our many COOL project partners made “stately progress” when we got together for the second project workshop on the 15th October at Blickling Hall, a wonderful stately home in lovely Norfolk (UK). So we were honoured to be hosted by Norfolk County Council in this very impressive Jacobean house and its amazing gardens. The aim of the workshop was to discuss the project’s recent local research and the impact it would have on the development of the future Toolkit. With such a Toolkit a business, for example, can make step-by-step changes that will reduce costs, improve customer satisfaction and attract visitors, benefit local people and the environment in its destination. It will also benefit the business itself by protecting the resources on which it depends. It is hoped that the COOL Partners can introduce the tools to local businesses, for example with the help of workshops or training events. The COOL project remains an exciting programme in the sense that there are many partners involved, in 2 different countries, who all work differently with their businesses. We look forward to the end result.

For more details please contact Wilf Fenten at
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and have a look at our website

Exmoor Tourism Conference

A great opportunity to hear from VisitEngland and to catch up on all the latest news from around Exmoor National Park as well as to visit the new Pavilion, learn about an exciting new heritage project and attend expert seminars. Advanced booking is essential.
Read more 


Le Parc naturel régional du Morvan, lauréat français 2013 du concours EDEN

Le Parc naturel régional du Morvan déposera sa candidature à la Charte Européenne du Tourisme Durable auprès de la Fédération EUROPARC avant la fin de l'année. Cette démarche permet la formalisation des ambitions du territoire en faveur d'un tourisme durable. De plus, grâce à la démarche « Morvan pour tous » le Parc naturel régional sera récompensé pour une réalisation exemplaire dans le domaine de l’accessibilité lors de la cérémonie de remise des prix EDEN le 11 novembre prochain à Bruxelles. Plus d'informations


/  Feullitons  / Reportage  /


Children and nature: a healthy relationship?

20 November is celebrated as the international day for children. The United Nations General Assembly recommended in 1954 (resolution 836 (IX)) that all countries institute a Universal Children's Day, to be observed as a day of understanding between children and of activity promoting the welfare of the world's children. The date of 20 November marks the day on which the Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, in 1959, and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, in 1989. Read more
Nature should be considered a critical variable in the design of all childhood  habitats, including homes, childcare centres, schools, places of worship, and neighbourhoods, and in the many other community places where children go with family and friends: botanical gardens, museums, city parks, etc.”
- Robin Moore, Natural Learning  Initiative, North Carolina State University

It is said that the world stays on the shoulder of young people. With the state of art technology, young people these days have sufficient sources to be informed, learn and act collectively to address some of the world's most pressing environmental problems and understand the importance of connection to the nature.

EUROPARC educational programme for children – the Junior Ranger programme

Young people are at the heart of the local communities living in and around Protected Areas. They are also the future advocates, guardians and potential employees of these areas. By providing young people with opportunities to participate in their work, Protected Areas fulfill their educational role whilst enhancing individuals understanding of their aims and appreciation of the natural and cultural resources they protect. Read More
A recent great example comes from from Müritz National Park, where Junior Rangers enjoyed a lovely autumn Sunday in the nature harvesting apples and pears. The freshly squeezed juice was of course delicious and ready for immediate consumption…Have a look at the great pictures here.
One of EUROPARC members, the Scarpe-Escaut Regional Nature Park is involved in an INTERREG IVB program called W.E.C.A.N.  One of the aims of this project, was to recreate a link between the local communities and the Natural Heritage, where they specifically targeted the schoolchildren. As a pilot project, EUROPARC Junior Rangers concept was adapted for the children in primary schools in the area of the Park. The overall aim is to transfer the basic knowledge and know-how of the environment, nature, biodiversity, etc., throughout the whole school year.  The French Rangers – Ecogardes, report on their activities regularly. Read more here

RESEARCH and FINDINGS: Dr. Silvia Collado answers the big question: ‘Does children’s contact with nature really have benefits?’

Read the full feature article and find all the information from our members and partners on this topic directly on our website!
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The production of this newsletter has been supported financially in the framework of the European Commission’s 2013 LIFE funding programme of operating grants for European Environmental NGOs.