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Biodiversity and Conservation

, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp 601–618 | Cite as

Missing links: how individual’s can contribute to reserve policy enforcement on the example of the European Union

  • Volker MauerhoferEmail author
Comment

Abstract

This comment looks at opportunities available to individuals alone or as a member of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to enforce reserve policy at the EU level to improve the effectiveness of biodiversity conservation. Based on a literature review, recent developments in certain EU policies (i.e., Nature Conservation Policy, Common Agricultural Policy, Regional Policy, Århus—Public Participation and Access to Justice) are assessed by means of a SEPO analysis. SEPO is a French acronym that stands for the successes (succès), failures (echècs), potentials (potentialités), and obstacles (obstacles). This method aims to analyse a situation from four dimensions of the past (successes and failures) and future (potentials and obstacles). The analysis shows different ways in which individuals can contribute to reserve policy enforcement (i.e., by public interest complaint based on private rights) and identifies public funding opportunities for research and management of reserves. Some of these mechanisms have just recently been introduced (e.g., Århus rights and several funding opportunities). Not surprisingly, the widest set of opportunities is provided by the Nature Conservation Policy. The other three policies (Common Agricultural Policy, Regional Policy, Århus—Public Participation and Access to Justice) touch on reserve conservation only in an additional way, either horizontally or vertically. The analysis also identifies inter-linkages between the different policies with regard to reserve conservation, which may be used by individuals to enforce policy either in a protective or cooperative way.

Keywords

Access to justice Århus Convention Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) European Union Natura 2000 Non-governmental organisations Protected area Public participation Regional Policy Direct effect 

Abbreviations

AEWA

Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds

BD

Birds Directive

CF

Cohesion Fund

CMS

Convention on Migratory Species

EC

Treaty establishing the European Union or European Community

ECJ

European Court of Justice

ERDF

European Regional Development Fund

ESF

European Social Fund

EU

European Union

HD

Habitats Directive

NGO

Non-governmental organisation

SEPO

Successes (succès), failures (echècs), potentials (potentialités), obstacles (obstacles)

SWOT

Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats

TEN

Trans-European Network

Notes

Acknowledgements

The author is grateful to Will Cresswell, Elaine C. Hsiao and four anonymous reviewers for her helpful comments on earlier drafts of this comment. In particular I also thank Susan Sellars-Shrestha for a sorrow review of the English. Of course, the usual disclaimer applies.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of ViennaViennaAustria

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