Draft Protocol amending the European Landscape Convention
- Parliamentary Assembly
- Text adopted by the Standing Committee,
acting on behalf of the Assembly, on 4 March 2016 (see Doc. 13989, report of the Committee on Social Affairs, Health and
Sustainable Development, rapporteur: Mr Stefan Schennach).
1. The Parliamentary Assembly acknowledges
the importance of the European Landscape Convention (ETS No. 176),
opened for signature in October 2000. It recognises the interplay
between landscapes and other substantial issues related to the social
model chosen by a given society, the development of economic activities
and the protection of the environment. As such, landscapes are a
fundamental component of sustainable development.
2. The European Landscape Convention underlines the paramount
importance of providing protection not only to landscapes of outstanding
beauty but also to ordinary areas, giving the general public the
keys to take part in the decision-making processes that shape their
The Assembly notes that, like many other Council of Europe
treaties, the European Landscape Convention is not open exclusively
to member States and that it already provides, in Article 14, for
the opening of the convention to European non-member States and
the European Union. The draft protocolNote
the accession to the European Landscape Convention by non-European
States thus merely extends the geographical application of the treaty.
4. The Assembly observes that the draft protocol does not provide
for the modification of the title of the convention, while its provisions
provide for a change of the initially strict “European” nature of
the convention in order to underline the treaty’s new “international”
scope. With a view to promoting the European Landscape Convention
worldwide, the Assembly believes that a change in the title would
encourage non-European States to join it and would give more visibility
to the Council of Europe as the owner of this legal instrument.
Therefore, it recommends that the Committee of Ministers consider
amending the title to the “Council of Europe Landscape Convention”.
5. The Assembly proposes, for the sake of coherence in legal
terms used and the procedure referred to in Articles 7 and 8 of
the draft protocol, to replace, in Article 8.a, the
words “acceptance, approval or accession” with the words “acceptance
or approval” and to delete the sentence below which reads “In witness
whereof, the undersigned, being duly authorised thereto, have signed
6. The Assembly believes that the opening of the European Landscape
Convention to signature by non-European States echoes the neighbourhood
policy of the Council of Europe. Given that widening the geographical
scope of such a convention could only benefit the values promoted
by the Council of Europe and produce positive outcomes, the Assembly
welcomes the changes brought by the draft amending protocol to the
European Landscape Convention. It therefore supports this draft
protocol, with some minor changes, and recommends its adoption by
the Committee of Ministers, as well as its subsequent opening for
ratification, acceptance or approval, as rapidly as possible.