While most of the world is focusing on climate change and the steps needed to curb it, another critical environmental aspect – that of biodiversity – is failing to get the attention it deserves.
A growing number of reports show that biodiversity and ecosystems are deteriorating rapidly in Europe and around the world. This suggests that tackling nature and biodiversity problems is becoming more urgent than ever if we want to preserve our planet as it is today.
The European Commission adopted a new biodiversity strategy in June, with an action plan aiming to put Europe’s biodiversity on the path to recovery by 2030. The Green Deal is also a step in that direction, as it seeks to create the world’s first climate-neutral continent by 2050 and make the EU economy sustainable and nature-friendly.
But this will not be enough unless other countries follow suit. The population sizes of mammals, birds, fish, amphibians and reptiles around the world have seen an alarming average drop of 68% since 1970, according to the Living Planet Index.
This Special Report, published during EU Green Week, sheds light on how sustainability and biodiversity fare in Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, Poland, and Spain.
At the entrance to the Adriatic town of Omiš, right next to the picturesque canyon of the river Cetina, a cosy family hotel is perched on a cliff. But Villa Dvor is not your run-of-the-mill seaside villa. It is a trailblazer of sorts, relying on organic farming and the concept of self-sufficiency.
Romania has the largest area of virgin forests in the whole of the EU. Home to a large number of animal and plant species, they are endangered by illegal logging, as seen in a recent documentary starring ultramarathon runner Andrei Roșu.
Kaliakra is probably the most beautiful Black Sea cape of Bulgaria. But it has also become an illustration of the hectic way in which the government tries to balance the interests of big business, local communities and environmentalists.
More and more city dwellers in Spain are looking for ecological and sustainable alternatives to city life, to reconnect with nature and escape from polluted urban environments and unhealthy crowded spaces, particularly in times of the coronavirus.