Loch Lomond Oak woodlands and rolling hills of Scotland's Loch Lomond. © Robert Keane / Unsplash

Stories in Europe

Conserving Europe's Private Lands

60% of Europe's land is privately owned. The EU can curb biodiversity loss by engaging the continent's landowners.

The Nature Conservancy's work in Europe continues to expand. Working alongside the European Landowners' Organization (ELO) and the Flemish Agency for Nature and Forest (ANB), TNC is helping the European Union meet its commitment to curbing biodiversity loss through the Land Is For Ever project.

Much of Europe's biodiversity sustains itself or migrates on the 60% of European land that is privately owned. Most EU member states have created voluntary programs that provide incentives for landowners to manage their land through plans that include conservation. However, many of these programs are new and relatively unknown to landowners. 

Herein lies an opportunity. By engaging in thoughtful dialogue with Europe's landowners and their representatives, we can expand private land conservation methods throughout the EU. The Land Is For Ever project aims to create a network of European private landowners that are involved in nature protection and advocate for more of it throughout the continent.

Sheep resting on private pastureland on Scotland's Isle of Skye.

Project actions

  • Categorizing currently-known conservation tools available for landowners in both Europe and the U.S.
  • Conducting focus group meetings in 14 EU Member States to scope landowners preferences about the various conservation tools
  • Field-testing innovative tools
  • Providing European Commission with policy recommendations


Philip Tabas
Special Advisor, The Nature Conservancy

Andras Krolopp
Senior Policy Advisor & Project Manager, The Nature Conservancy



This project has received funding from the European Union's LIFE program under grant agreement LIFE17PREBE001.

How TNC Advances Conservation in Europe