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Natura 2000 network worth

A recent study titled “The Economic benefits of the Natura 2000 Network” has concluded that the Natura 2000 network, an EU wide network of nature protection areas, is worth €300bn a year, the equivalent of 2-3% of EU GDP. This is far over the €6bn per year member states have to spend on maintaining and restoring it, helping strengthen the case for continued or increased funding of nature protection. Based on studies of market and welfare values of habitats and individual sites - though scaled up to EU level - it stated that “the benefits that flow from Natura 2000 are of the order of €200 to 300 billion/year. It is estimated that there are between 1.2 to 2.2 billion visitor days to Natura 2000 sites each year, generating recreational benefits worth between €5 and €9 billion per annum. Therefore, investing in Natura 2000 makes sense and is directly relevant to Europe 2020 objectives of growth and employment as it can be a motor for the local and regional economy” READ MORE

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Issue 21