German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)


National Natural Heritage

Nationalparkamt Vorpommern
"Sundische Wiese" in the national park Vorpommersche Boddenlandschaft

Germany’s national natural heritage includes extensive near-natural deciduous woodlands, river valleys and the floodplains of rivers such as the Elbe, Danube and Ems, lakelands, bogs and fens, the Wadden Sea, and the Bodden and the chalk cliffs of the Baltic Sea.

Varied hill country in the north and south of Germany and the richly structured central uplands are a further valuable part of the country’s natural heritage. The same goes for the Green Belt running along the former internal German border – an ecological network of national and European importance – and areas that are home to endangered animal and plant species. Post-mining landscapes and military sites often provide such retreats.

 Further information

The coalition parties in the 16th legislature (CDU/CSU and SPD) agreed in 2005 to transfer free of charge up to 125,000 ha of nationally representative federal land of high conservation value, including the Green Belt, to the German Länder, Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt (DBU) and other nature conservation organisations.

So far an initial tranche of 100,000 ha has been identified. This is currently being transferred. The safeguarding of a further 25,000 ha of land of high conservation value provided for in the 2009 coalition agreement between the CDU/CSU and the FDP is likewise now being put into action (second tranche). Commencing in 2014, on the basis of the 2013 coalition agreement between the CDU/CSU and the SPD, a third tranche of 31,055 ha was identified and exempted from privatisation. In this way, former military or lignite mining sites and the Green Belt, Germany’s largest ecological network, are retained as valuable natural spaces.

K. Leidorf
Green Belt
U. Albrecht
Site Prösa (Bad Liebenwerda)

Further information

Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)
FG II 2.1 Biotope Protection, Biotope Management and National Heritage
Dr. Karin Reiter, Andreas Metzmacher
Tel.: +49 (228) 8491-1531/-1532

Last Change: 29/06/2017