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NATURE

Denmark’s plants and wildlife to get own website

A new website entitled Danmarks Artsportal, to be launched in 2020, will provide nature enthusiasts with a guide to animals and plants in the Scandinavian country.

Denmark’s plants and wildlife to get own website
File photo: Liselotte Sabroe/Scanpix 2017

The web portal, which will be produced by the Natural History Museum of Denmark and the Environmental Protection Agency, will collate public and private data on species of wildlife prevalent in Denmark, the Ministry for the Environment and Food announced in a press statement.

“This is a project that museums and researchers have been asking for the last 20 years, so it is very pleasing that we can now get started on the web resource and create a unique basis for data on Danish species,” professor Peter C. Kjærgaard of the Natural History Museum of Denmark said in the press statement.

The database will help provide a strong foundation of knowledge of how different species live and thrive in Denmark, according to the professor.

Funding of six million kroner has been allocated to the project in the 2019 budget, with further funds of just under 20 million kroner in total provided by two foundations, the 15. Juni Fonden (six million kroner) and the Aage V. Jensens Naturfond (13.29 million kroner).

Minister for the Environment and Food Jakob Ellemann-Jensen said that Denmark’s wildlife had much to offer with the right information about where to look.

“We will make it possible to contribute with own observations of species around the country,” Ellemann-Jensen said in the press statement.

“I have fished and hunted for many years myself and think it is a wonderful idea for all Danes to be able to improve others’ experiences with nature by telling us about their own,” the minister added.

READ ALSO: Danes pick up 173 tonnes of litter from natural areas

ENVIRONMENT

Why 30 percent of Denmark could be left to nature

A Danish environmental organization has received a positive political response over a proposal to ensure 30 percent of Denmark be reserved for nature.

Why 30 percent of Denmark could be left to nature
Photo: Henning Bagger/Ritzau Scanpix

The Danish Society for Nature Conservation (Danmarks Naturfredningsforening, DN) wants the country’s nature to be written into law by way of an obligation to ensure 30 percent of Danish land to be nature reserve by 2031, DR reports.

The proposal was made as government politicians met at Marienborg, the official residence of the prime minister, on Monday for talks on biodiversity.

The concept of such a ‘biodiversity law’, which would place binding targets for Denmark on the area, was initially positively received.

The interest organization for the agriculture sector, the Danish Agriculture & Food Council, has said it also supports biodiversity goals, while environment minister Lea Wermelin said she would listen to suggestions regarding both targets and legislation.

“Fundamentally, the biggest task right now is to reverse nature’s decline and ensure that over 2,000 species threatened by extinction get a helping hand and the chance to remain in Denmark,” DN president Maria Reumert Gjerding said to DR.

“So it’s crucial that politicians make commitments to nature targets,” she added.

The Marienborg meeting is the beginning of government work to implement a ‘package’ of laws on nature and biodiversity, which the Social Democratic government promised prior to the June general election.

Wermelin said action must be taken to prevent Denmark from entering a “natural crisis”.

“We are genuinely interested in a new process to form a long-term plan for Denmark’s nature. Although reports paint a bleak picture, they also say it’s possible to set a new, green direction,” she added.

The minister welcomed “specific ideas and wishes” from environmental organizations that could help in making such a plan, DR reports.

Although only 0.4 percent of the area of Denmark is currently wild nature, DN says the target could be reached by buying or renting land from landowners and leaving it to nature, as well as by ensuring a specified amount of agricultural land actively benefits biodiversity.

READ ALSO: Here are Denmark's 15 most beautiful natural areas

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