#stayhome Maintain the distance, wash your hands, and follow instructions from the health authorities.
RSS   Newsletter   Contact   Advertise with us

Invasive alien species cost Europe 12 billion euros

Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn
Staff writer ▼ | September 10, 2013
The European Commission proposed new legislation to prevent and manage the rapidly growing threat from invasive species. There are currently more than 12,000 species present in Europe which are alien to the natural environment.
Europe nature
Europe natureThe European Commission proposed new legislation to prevent and manage the rapidly growing threat from invasive species. There are currently more than 12,000 species present in Europe which are alien to the natural environment.


About 15% of these are invasive and they are rapidly growing in number.

Invasive alien species cause damage worth at least 12 billion euros every year in Europe, through hazards to human health (e.g. the Asian hornet and tiger mosquito, whose effects can be fatal), damage to infrastructure (e.g. Japanese knotweed damaging buildings) and yield losses in agriculture (e.g. the coypu, which harms crops).

Invasive alien species can seriously damage ecosystems and cause extinctions of species which are needed to maintain the balance of our natural environment. Black cherry for example is seriously disturbing forest ecosystems and grey squirrels are outcompeting red squirrels. After habitat loss, invasive alien species are the second largest cause of biodiversity loss in the world.

Many Member States are already having to spend considerable resources in dealing with this problem, but their efforts are not effective if they are dealt with purely on a national basis. The Giant hogweed eradication campaign in Belgium, for example, will be undermined if the species reinvades from France.

The proposal centres round a list of invasive alien species of Union concern, which will be drawn up with the Member States using risk assessments and scientific evidence. Selected species will be banned from the EU, meaning it will not be possible to import, buy, use, release or sell them. Special measures will be taken to deal with issues arising for traders, breeders or pet owners in the transitional period.


 

MORE INSIDE POST