Ten sites in Switzerland, France and Italy have been added to a conservation organisation’s ‘green list’ of well managed protected areas.
The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) published on Tuesday its "Green List of Protected and Conserved Areas", which counts a total of 59 sites around the world.
It now includes seven new sites in France, two in Italy and for the first time a site in Switzerland.
The sites are based on 17 criteria in four areas: "good governance, robust design and planning, effective management and effective conservation outcomes".
“Effective protected and conserved areas are critical if we are to halt the dramatic loss of life on Earth we are seeing,” said IUCN Director General Dr Bruno Oberle.
“As IUCN and the global community call for the protection of 30% of our planet’s surface by 2030, IUCN Green List sites provide the best examples of effectiveness and inclusiveness, which are essential for our efforts to succeed.”
The IUCN, along with a coalition of states led by France and Costa Rica, is calling for 30% of the planet to be protected by 2030, as part of the negotiations on biodiversity protection ahead of COP15 in China this autumn.
The new certified sites in France are the Coloraie du Volcan reserve on Reunion Island, the Contamines-Montjoie national nature reserve (Haute-Savoie), the marshes of the low valleys of the Essonne and Juine rivers (Ile-de-France), the Tour du Valat estate (Bouches-du-Rhône), the Sainte-Victoire national nature reserve (Bouches-du-Rhône), the Haut-Giffre and Aiguilles Rouges national nature reserves (Savoie) and the Natura 2000 site Bassin du Drugeon (Jura).
France now has 22 sites on the list, the highest number of any country.
The two protected Italian areas joining the list are the Arcipelago Toscano National Park and the Foreste Casentinesi, Monte Falterona and Campigna National Park.
The Swiss National Park also became the first Green List site in Switzerland. It is a strict nature reserve, where human activity is virtually banned, with 170 square kilometres of forests, subalpine and alpine meadows, as well as rocks and screes.