EU's Biodiversity Strategy: the EU Parliament ask for the implementation
On 3 February 2016, during the EU Parliament plenary session, with the majority of 592 over 52, MEPs voted to approve a report on the Mid-term review of the EU's Biodiversity Strategy, which calls for the protection of the Birds and Habitats Directives. This report, ‘own-initiative report’ led by the Belgian MEP Mark Demesmaeker, stresses that full implementation and enforcement of these laws, collectively known as the Nature Directives, are needed to achieve the targets of the EU Biodiversity Strategy.
In his statement, MEP Demesmaeker said: “Biodiversity is not just about plants and animals, but about mankind and society as a whole. It is an essential foundation for our health, well-being and for our economic prosperity. Biodiversity provides many essential benefits like for instance clean air, pure water and pollination services. Strong nature and a strong economy are not mutually exclusive, quite on the contrary. If Europe fails to meet the 2020 goals, that can cost us 50 billion euro per year.” Demesmaeker asks in his report for more political will at all levels. He encourages EU Member States to work closely with all stakeholders to achieve the 2020 biodiversity targets. Better implementation, strict enforcement and a further integration of biodiversity into other policy areas are essential.