The European Union has committed to a target for biodiversity: ‘To halt the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystem services in the EU by 2020 and restore them in so far as possible, while stepping up the EU contribution to averting global biodiversity loss’. This target underpins the EU Biodiversity Strategy and shows that there is a high political commitment and urgent need to protect and improve the status of Europe's biodiversity.
To ensure the adequate implementation of the Strategy and that Europe continues stepping up its efforts for biodiversity, the EHF seeks to influence EU policy and action through discussion, advocacy and joint initiatives.
The Forum represents the voice of the environmental civil society organizations which take part in it and coordinates communication between them and the European Commission. It provides advice and knowledge on relevant issues to the Commission and is represented in various fora, including the Commission’s Expert Groups, the Coordination Group on Biodiversity and Nature and the Nature Directors meetings.
The EHF work is organised around thematic Working Groups (WG) to allow tackling issues of importance in a more efficient way; there are currently eight Working Groups, each led by a coordinator:
- WG Management of Natura 2000, Federico Minozzi (Europarc)
- WG Financing Natura 2000, Wouter Langhout (BirdLife Europe)
- WG Monitoring and Reporting, Tony Gent (SEH)
- WG Invasive Alien Species, Danny Heptinstall (RSPB/BirdLife)
- WG Green Infrastructure and Restoration, Sue Collins (Butterfly Conservation Europe) & Agnes Zolomy (CEEweb)
- WG No Net Loss, Hannah Mowat (FERN)
- WG Biodiversity and Agriculture, Friedrich Wulf (FoEE)
- WG Emerald Network, Friedrich Wulf (FoEE)
The Forum is led by the Coordination Group: a Chair (currently vacant), Sue Collins (Butterfly Conservation Europe) and Agnes Zolyomi (CEEweb) are the Vice Chairs, Ana Nieto (IUCN) is in charge of the Secretariat. In its role as facilitator and convenor, IUCN promotes coordinated actions and exchange of information among EHF members.
A Rocha, BatLife Europe, BirdLife International, Buglife-The Invertebrate Conservation Trust, Butterfly Conservation Europe, CEEweb for Biodiversity, ClientEarth, EUROPARC Federation, European Environmental Bureau (EEB), European Natural Heritage Foundation (Euronatur), Eurosite, FERN, Friends of the Earth Europe (FoEE), International Mire Conservation Group (IMCG), International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Oceana, Planta Europa, Rewilding Europe, Societas Europaea Herptologica (SEH), Society for Ecological Restoration (SER), Wetlands International (WI), WWF European Policy Office (WWF EPO)
Contact: Ana Nieto, European Biodiversity Conservation Officer