The European Commission has announced the winners of the 2024 Natura 2000 Award at Green Week in Brussels on Thursday.

We are delighted to share that our WaterLANDS Action Site partners in Ireland and Estonia (LIFE IP Wild Atlantic Nature and the Estonian Fund for Nature) were two of six initiatives across Europe who were selected as winners!

The awards were decided by a high-level jury of representatives from the European Commission, Council, Committee of the Regions, NGO community and the users and landowners associations.

The biennial Award, this year celebrating its tenth anniversary, recognises outstanding management of Natura 2000 sites and showcases the network’s added value of conserving nature for local communities and economies across the EU.


Photo from the European Commission website.

The Estonian Fund for Nature received the Conservation on Land Award with their initiative to restore 8,000 hectare of mire habitats.

The Wild Atlantic Nature project convinced the jury with their ’Ground-breaking agri-environment payment scheme for farmers in Natura 2000 areas in Ireland’ (Working together for Nature category).

Since 2014, the Natura 2000 Award recognises nature conservation success stories across the EU and raises awareness about one of Europe’s outstanding achievements, the Natura 2000 network of protected areas. For citizens, it represents a tangible example of EU environment policy, as 65% of Europeans live within 5 km of a Natura 2000 site.

Read the full article from the European Commission to learn more about this years Natura 2000 awards.