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You can apply in the following three categories:

  1. Managing our natural resources – conserving our species and habitats on Natura 2000 and locally protected sites

Natura 2000 sites are the cornerstones of biodiversity along with locally protected areas conserving important species and habitats in Europe. If you have a project or example, which have contributed to the improvement of the conservation status of Natura 2000 species and/or habitats or a nationally protected species in Central and Eastern Europe, this is your category. Concerned habitats or species should be on the Birds Directive Annex I, or be a regularly occurring migrating bird or Habitats Directive Annex I or II or be nationally protected species.

  1. Connecting and restoring habitats and greening up urban spaces – the contribution to the European Green Infrastructure Strategy and its benefits

Restoring and connecting ecosystems as well as creating new green areas are the keys to maintain healthy ecosystems and their valuable services. This is your category if your project covers restoration activity of habitats or species, e.g. restoring wetlands, forests or grasslands, renaturalizing areas under industrial/infrastructural pressures and reintroducing species in Central and Eastern Europe. This is your category as well, if you created a so-called Green Infrastructure element in the region, which includes any scale of project that has multiple benefits, e.g. greening a town or city with green roofs and parks for reducing heat waves, planting hedges between large agricultural fields hosting biodiversity creating alluvial forests, floodplains or parks for flood protection or connecting habitats via fish passes, amphibian crosses or ecoducts. Apart from having its positive impacts on biodiversity, you should also emphasise on that these activities have beneficial effects on the economy and society, providing us with valuable ecosystem services, but also with greener solutions with financial benefits. The scope of the category is not limited to particular types of restoration activities or to particular types of habitats or species.

  1. Involvement of the business sector and financing mechanisms in nature conservation

Businesses and biodiversity are fundamentally connected as most businesses are themselves also dependent on biodiversity. Businesses and their financing tools are needed to complement the ebbing sources for nature conservation, while the corporate sector’s investment in nature is ultimately its protection of resources. This category will reward successful efforts that in Central and Eastern Europe brought together a. business, NGO or governmental stakeholders to work together and support nature conservation or b. financing mechanism (payment for ecosystem services, labeling, green product selling, green innovations, environmental tax introduction, etc.) application that contributed to nature protection.