Message from the UN Secretary-General opens EUROPARC Conference 2017

Unable to join EUROPARC Conference due to Agenda incompatibilities, the United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres and the EU Commissioner for the Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Karmenu Vella sent their important messages in video, praising the importance of the event and bragging the work done by the Magic Mountains and the EUROPARC Federation.

For Mr Guterres, the Conference is “an excellent opportunity to debate and highlight the role of Protected Areas in the context of touristic, environmental, social, cultural and economic sustainability”, especially relevant in the context of the UN International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development. Mr. Guterres highlighted the European Charter for Sustainable Tourism as an important tool for Protected Areas to better implement the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and work for the benefit of the present and future generations!


Karmenu Vella stressed that “protected areas raise awareness of the value of nature and they deliver multiple benefits. But we need a better connection to nature and for that we need good city plans, that integrate nature and green spaces”. The Commissioner recognised that “EUROPARC has been building these bridges, with an excellent work in the promotion of protected areas and development of sustainable tourism”, a concern also shared by the European Commission.