Since 2009, the Bern Convention has a working group of experts on biodiversity of European islands. Islands contain a very rich
biological diversity developed as a result of their isolation, but that biodiversity is under particular threat
because islands generally have a shortness of space and their biodiversity is more affected than in other territories
by climate change, habitat destruction by building on the shore line and pollution. Islands are also very vulnerable
to invasive alien species (IAS) which is the second cause of loss in species in the world.
The Group of Experts improves networking of conservationists on European Islands, analyses the threats to island
biodiversity, fosters conservation work and proposes guidelines for government action aimed to an improved
protection of Island biodiversity. It contributes to current work of the Convention on Biological Diversity on
islands, integrating the Global Island Partnership (GLISPA) and promoting further work on IAS on islands in the seas
surrounding Europe: the Baltic, Mediterranean and Black seas and the Arctic and East Atlantic Oceans.
The Group will focus its work in the next years in the elaboration of a Charter on Biodiversity in European Islands,
filling the knowledge gaps on threatened island biodiversity and on IAS on islands.
It will propose best practices for island
biodiversity monitoring and conservation, recommending eradication of some particularly harmful alien species and
exploring the conservation potential of small uninhabited islands.