EU misses 2020 biodiversity targets by a long shot, EEA report shows


EU misses 2020 biodiversity targets by a long shot, EEA report shows

23 October 2020
Despite significant efforts undertaken, biodiversity continues its rapid decline across the EU, finds a new report published by the European Environment Agency (EEA) today.

The State of Nature in the EU report officially confirms that Europe is nowhere near to meeting the key targets of its 2020 Biodiversity Strategy as the deadline looms. The report identifies unsustainable farming and forestry, urban sprawl and pollution as the key pressures causing the drastic decline in Europe’s biodiversity. 

The EEA report includes some alarming findings on species loss, and confirms the trend of the decline accelerating since the last assessment five years ago. A  devastating 81% of habitats now have an ‘poor’ or ‘bad’ status, with more than 1/3 continuing to deteriorate at EU level. For species, over 60% have a ‘poor’ or ‘bad’ status - only 6% are showing improving trends while 1/3 are still deteriorating. Fish species are faring worse of all, with 38% of them in ‘bad’ conservation status, and 50% of fishes and amphibians deteriorating. The report specifically emphasises the negative impact of intensive agriculture, with farmland birds and pollinator habitats being particularly affected.

This report drives home quite how urgent action has become to save what’s left of Europe’s nature'

Sabien Leemans, Senior Policy Officer for Biodiversity at the WWF European Policy Office