Overall, however, the situation is alarming. This is the conclusion of the report on the state of the environment, which the German Cabinet has now adopted in Berlin. The report lays out the successes and the continuing challenges in the field of conservation.
More space for conservation
Currently, 75 percent of biotopes in Germany are deemed to be endangered on the basis of the Red List published in 2006. This is why the protection and sustainable management of biological diversity is a special responsibility of the German government.
The National Biodiversity Strategy is a start. By 2020, for instance, two percent of the surface area of Germany is to be left as untouched nature. By the same date, five percent of the forested area too is to be allowed to develop naturally.
Germany has a particular responsibility for conserving certain plant and animal species, which are not found anywhere else. Beech forests, for instance, used to be Germany's most common ecosystem two thousand years ago. Today beech trees account for only 1.6 million hectares, or 14 percent of its forested area.
This is why it is important to preserve the remnants of beech forests. The German government will be actively supporting the nomination of the most valuable beech forests for approval as a UNESCO world natural heritage site. The process was initiated by the federal states of Brandenburg, Hesse, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and Thuringia.
Less land for settlements and traffic
One key point in protecting the environment is to seal less land with asphalt, concrete, bitumen or other materials, which prevent air and water penetrating the soil.
This is why a total to date of 100,000 hectares of state-owned land have been transferred to environmental facilities free of charge for conservation purposes. They include land along what used to be the inner-German border, where the so-called Green Belt has been established.
The European Green Belt crosses the whole of Europe from the Barents Sea in the north to the Adriatic and the Black Sea in the south. It was able to develop along the line of the former iron Curtain, as a result of the prevailing historical circumstances.
All in all, it must be said that an extremely high percentage of land in Germany is used. Every day more than 100 hectares are harnessed for settlements and traffic. In the National Sustainability Strategy the government lays out the target of cutting this figure to 30 hectares by 2020.
Last year, the Federal Republic of Germany took over the presidency of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The ninth conference of parties held in May 2008 in Bonn marked the start of the German presidency.
At the conference, Chancellor Angela Merkel pledged that between 2009 and 2012 the German government would provide a contribution of 500 million euros. The funding is to be used for the international protection of forests and threatened ecosystems. As of 2013 it is planned to make an annual contribution of half a billion euros.Another important strategic goal of the agreement is the so-called 2010 target. This stipulates that the ongoing anthropogenic loss of species diversity is to be significantly slowed by 2010.
With the report on the state of the environment the German government is honouring its commitment to issue a report on this topic at least once during each legislative period. The government published its last report in May 2005.
The report published by the Federal Environment Ministry takes stock of the state of the environment in Germany, and analyses it. It identifies prospects for protecting and sustainably managing biological diversity and presents the priorities of the conservation policy of the German government.
You will find a detailed presentation in the "Environmental Data" published by the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation and the "Facts on the Environment" published by the Federal Environment Agency.Further Information:
Waste in the water – New purification techniques for healthier aquatic ecosystems
24.07.2018 | Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen
Plenty of habitat for bears in Europe
24.07.2018 | Deutsches Zentrum für integrative Biodiversitätsforschung (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig
New design tool automatically creates nanostructure 3D-print templates for user-given colors
Scientists present work at prestigious SIGGRAPH conference
Most of the objects we see are colored by pigments, but using pigments has disadvantages: such colors can fade, industrial pigments are often toxic, and...
Scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles present new research on a curious cosmic phenomenon known as "whistlers" -- very low frequency packets...
Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.
When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...
Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.
Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....
Proteins must be folded correctly to fulfill their molecular functions in cells. Molecular assistants called chaperones help proteins exploit their inbuilt folding potential and reach the correct three-dimensional structure. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPIB) have demonstrated that actin, the most abundant protein in higher developed cells, does not have the inbuilt potential to fold and instead requires special assistance to fold into its active state. The chaperone TRiC uses a previously undescribed mechanism to perform actin folding. The study was recently published in the journal Cell.
Actin is the most abundant protein in highly developed cells and has diverse functions in processes like cell stabilization, cell division and muscle...
17.08.2018 | Event News
08.08.2018 | Event News
27.07.2018 | Event News
17.08.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
17.08.2018 | Information Technology
17.08.2018 | Life Sciences