German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)


Tasks - nature conservation concerns us all

Prof. Dr. Beate Jessel, President of the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation

The diversity of species, habitats and landscapes is critical to human survival. Safeguarding this diversity for the long-term future is an increasingly urgent challenge. It requires approaches that integrate the protection, development and sustainable use of our natural resources with a purposeful, consistent course of action. The Federal Agency for Nature Conservation plays a key part in incorporating scientific knowledge into policy decisions and applying that knowledge in practice. BfN is involved and has links with numerous activities to conserve biodiversity and natural ecosystems in Germany and internationally.

Nature conservation can only succeed in the long run if it enjoys support across the whole of society. The Agency therefore maintains an ongoing dialogue with policymakers, business, the scientific community, educators and the media, constantly adapting the nature conservation toolkit to societal change.

Photo: Marco Barnebeck /  Advice - Climate change is particularly noticeable in the high Alps.

Furnishing the science to underpin policy and administrative decisions is one of BfN’s central tasks.

Funding - Alte Sorge oxbow in Schleswig-Holstein, a large-scale nature conservation project funded by BfN. Photo: Michael Otto - Institut im Nabu

Ideas and activities to conserve animal and plant species and their habitats and to safeguard the ecosystem services vital for human survival need a sound scientific basis.

Enforcement - CITES governs trade in endangered species, including those living in the wild.

Germany and its constituent states (Länder) have signed a wide range of international nature conservation agreements. They have an obligation to transpose those agreements into national law and put their provisions into practice on an ongoing basis.

Information and ecucation - Seminar at the International Nature Conservation Academy on the Island of Vilm. Photo: BfN, Vilm

BfN considers itself as the central service provider for all issues relating to nature conservation. Comprehensive information and publicity work is therefore a key part of the Agency’s activities.
Information and education

Last Change: 01/01/2010