The Bern Convention Secretariat is happy to invite you to its Conference “Reaching concerted site conservation at pan-European level: progress, challenges and future of the Emerald Network” taking place on 4-5 October 2016 in Minsk, Belarus.
The event, which marks the end of the current EU/CoE Joint Programme, will gather policy makers and practitioners responsible for biodiversity conservation at the European, national and local levels, as well as civil society and the scientific community.
The conference builds upon the experience of a transnational partnership of seven countries joining their efforts in the setting-up of the Emerald Network of Areas of Special Conservation Interest. The Emerald Network was launched in 1989 in the framework of the Convention on the conservation of European wildlife and natural habitats (“the Bern Convention”). Practically, the Emerald Network is an extension of the EU Natura 2000 Network to European non-EU countries. The two networks complete each other and contribute to the establishment of a coherent ecological network of protected areas at pan-European level.
After a first day of interesting presentations and fruitful discussions, the participants will enjoy the second day in nature, a breathtaking field visit in Berezinski State Reserve.
The meeting will be held in English and Russian (with interpretation).
Interested to be part of the event, please send an e-mail with your contact details to [email protected]
Tuesday 4th October 2016
The conference will showcase the achievements and lessons learned by seven Eastern European and South-Caucasus countries in their work on the setting-up of the Emerald Network in the period 2013-2016. It aims at finding ways to address the countries’ common challenge of achieving a fully sufficient Emerald Network on their territories, a network capable of ensuring the long-term survival of species and habitats of European importance. Strong emphasis is placed on the necessity to enhance cooperation between national authorities, civil society and the scientific community in the process of the identification of the areas suitable for joining the Network. Such cooperation is particularly important with a view to ensuring the proper conservation and management of these areas at a later stage. Similarly, the importance of visibility and communication to mobilise political support and catalyse action across stakeholders, including business companies, landowners and users, is addressed. In this respect, sharing experience with countries which have worked on the setting-up on the EU Natura 2000 Network is an important part of the first meeting day.
Wednesday 5th October 2016
The participants will have the chance to visit Berezinski State Reserve, a unique Belarussian site located on the plane watershed between the Black and the Baltic Seas. Berezinski State Reserve is a candidate Emerald site and holds the European Diploma of Protected Areas of the Council of Europe since 1995. The participants will have an opportunity to interact with the management team of the reserve and learn about good practices in management of protected areas and cooperation activities with local stakeholders.