European Landscape Convention

The European Landscape Convention (CEP), signed in Florence, 20 October 2000, is an instrument proclaimed by the Council of Europe, which aims to promote the protection, management and planning of European landscapes.

It is the first international treaty dedicated exclusively to the landscape. Portugal ratified the CEP in February 2005.

The European Landscape Convention is an instrument of a conceptual and guiding nature that seeks to clarify the concepts related to the European landscape and create the conditions that will facilitate cooperation between signatory countries, with the Member State that ratifies the CEP being responsible for adapting its objectives and assumptions to the national context and proceeding its implementation at national, regional and local levels.

The CEP applies to the entire territory and covers natural, rural, urban and peri-urban áreas. It includes land areas, inland waters and maritime waters. It concerns not just landscapes may be considered exceptional (outstanding) but also everyday landscapes and degrated areas

The aspirations of the European Landscape Convention can be summarized in the following activities:

  • Identifying and characterizing landscapes and their main transformations;
  • Defining guiding measures for landscape management;
  • Promoting public participation in the course of its implementation;
  • Defining landscape quality objectives for the identified landscapes, using public consultation for this purpose;
  • Protecting the landscape in order to preserve its character, qualities and values;
  • Managing the landscape in order to harmonize the changes resulting from social, economic and environmental processes;
  • Arranging the landscape in a prospective way with a view to its enhancement, recovery or the construction of new landscapes;
  • Integrating the landscape into all relevant policies, such as spatial land, agriculture, water resources, nature and biodiversity conservation, tourism, etc.;
  • Promoting training, education and awareness of issues related to the landscape.