The Pan European Ecological Network
At the Conference ''Conserving Europe's Natural Heritage: Towards a European Ecological Network'', held in Maastricht on 9-12 November, 1993, 267 participants from 31 European States and 26 international organisations discussed the decline in Europe's biological and landscape diversity, primarily loss and fragmentation of habitats and deterioration of environmental quality, exacerbated by climate change. It further discussed a vision for nature on Europe and the most appropriate action that should be taken in order to halt and reverse the decline. EECONET (the European Ecological Network) or PEEN (the Pan European Ecological Network) had been born.
What is EECONET?
EECONET aims to promote co-operative action across the whole of Europe contributing to the evolving international process of developing a stronger strategic component to nature conservation in Europe. It is a conceptual and operational framework for translating these objectives into action.
A primary concern of EECONET is to secure a pro-active approach to preserve what remains of Europe's natural values increasing the biological and landscape diversity of the continent. Concrete measures aimed at enhancing the functions of natural systems are:
The physical network is incorporating many areas that are already formally protected as well as those that require such protection. It is including extensively used agricultural landscapes and other semi-natural habitats where existing land practices can be maintained in a form compatible with conservation needs. It is being elaborated at a local, national and international level.
EECONET offers added value over existing approaches.