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The Natura 2000 Awards 2022 of the EU Commission have been announced.
The German Speleological Federation VdHK won in the category
"Transboundary Cooperation". The CaveLife-App is an easy tool to
evaluate caves in a standardisized way according to the Natura 2000
guidelines. Natura 2000 is the largest transboundary network of
protected areas in the world. Since 2014, the award is now announced for
the 6th time.
On the occasion of the award ceremony, the VdHK together with the
European Cave Protection Commission ECPC handed over an open letter to
the EU Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries to ensure the
protection of geological assets.
Natura 2000 Award
Natura 2000-Award Award ceremony 18.05.
Pressemitteilung des VdHK vom 19.05.2022 (pdf)
Fotos zur Pressemitteilung (zip)
Press releases from the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve Rhön and the German EU Commission
On 18.05.2022 the VdHK together with the European Cave Protection Commission ECPC will hand over an open letter to the EU Commissioner for Environment Virginijus Sinkevičius on the occasion of the Natura 2000 Award ceremony. Both associations hope to draw the attention of the EU Commission to geological components of nature. For this, protection measures are urgently needed, far beyond Natura 2000, as biological priorities are set there.
Written Declaration EU Parliament 2008 on the protection of caves as a cultural, natural and environmental heritage
Petition to Stop Trade Import and Export of Cave Contents 2010 to the European Commission
IUCN resolution WCC 2020 Res 074 geoheritage and protected areas
Speleological links, books and papers:
For the evaluation of the condition of a cave as well as a uniform recording of the German cave and groundwater fauna, an "App for (bio)speleological assessment" was developed with CaveLife. Through it, all required basic data on the examined objects and the animal groups (taxa) that can be determined by visual observation can be recorded on site. In the case of natural caves, an assessment according to the European Habitats Directive of habitat structures and habitat impairments can also be carried out.
The data flows into the "Biospeleological Register". It is a joint project of the German Speleological Federation (VdHK) and the Hesse Federation for Cave and Karst Research (Landesverband für Höhlen- und Karstforschung Hessen e. V.). The aim is to bring together all zoological data recorded in Germany from caves, artificial cavities (e.g. mine tunnels, rock cellars) and groundwater-dependent ecosystems (e.g. springs) in one database under the leadership of the Department of Biospeleology of the VdHK. In addition, the parameters important for basic data collection and monitoring based on the European Habitats Directive regarding habitat type 8310 (caves not open to the public) are to be recorded.
The CaveLife app can be downloaded to computers, tablets or smartphones. It can be used offline for data recording in caves.
Last updated: 30/03/2020
The use of the app is free of charge for any non-commercial use. Any further use requires the explicit written permission of the Department of Biospeleology of the Verband der deutschen Höhlen und Karstforscher e. V. (German Speleological Federation) and the Landesverband für Höhlen- und Karstforschung Hessen e. V. (Hesse Federation for Cave and Karst Science). All data collected is automatically transmitted by the app to the biospeleological database and can be evaluated for scientific purposes by the Department of Biospeleology. We reserve the right to share the data with nature conservation authorities, other public authorities and the respective cave registers for the purpose of environmental and cave protection and speleological documentation. The biospeleological database is located on the server infrastructure of the Department of Biospeleology and is not publicly accessible. By using the app you agree that all data collected within the app will be transferred, evaluated and stored according to the above mentioned project goals. The transmission of the data takes place exclusively in encrypted form (HTTPS / TLS). Every user has the right to retrieve / request the data reported by him at any time. For this purpose, the user is provided with appropriate links to various data formats after completion of the assessment. As the collected data will be evaluated and used for the purpose of environmental and cave protection in the long term, it is only possible to delete the data in exceptional cases. You have the right to change incorrect data at any time. In this case, please contact the Department of Biospeleology of the VdHK and the Landesverband für Höhlen- und Karstforschung Hessen e. V. directly.
Please only enter data into the app if you agree to the following conditions:
The use of the app and the associated transfer of data is solely based on a voluntary basis.