The Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats signed in Bern in 1979, and hence called also the Bern Convention is the most important pan-European treaty for protection of biodiversity ever signed within the Council of Europe framework.
Most of the Council of Europe member states have acceded to the Bern Convention by now, and so have four African countries.
The European Union has also acceded to the Bern Convention. Two directives – namely the Bird and the Habitat Directive – have been adopted as the means of implementing the Convention. Therefore the European Union member states view the implementation of these directives as the means to implement also the Bern Convention.
One of the tools for the Bern Convention implementation is the creation of the Emerald network, or in the case of the European Union members states the Natura 2000 network.
While relatively good overview exists on the implementation of the above-mentioned directives by the EU member states (including designation of Natura 2000 sites) the information regarding the Bern Convention implementation in the other contracting parties is not so thorough.
The undersigned members of the Parliamentary Assembly are therefore deeming it necessary to compile a report with a comprehensive overview of the Bern Convention implementation (including information of the Emerald network) in all the contracting parties.