European Networks for Private Land Conservation - LIFE ENPLC

The project intends to expand the use of private land conservation (PLC) tools in the European Union, to improve the financial incentives and funding for PLC, to foster citizen engagement in PLC and to continue the existing networking among organisations and individuals engaged in PLC with the aim to establish durable governance structures for PLC in Europe.

Funded by: European Commission’s LIFE Programme
Project Duration : 2020 - 2024 (4 years)
Budget: 39.300 Euro

Project Objectives


The project will build on the two ongoing LIFE projects (LIFE L.I.F.E. and LIFE ELCN) that are currently investigating the potential of private land conservation in the EU and the tools needed to realise this potential.

The project will focus on the most promising PLC tools, with emphasis on conservation easements (both ongoing LIFE projects are considering easements as one of the most promising tools for the involvement of private landowners and the co-operation between nature NGO’s and individual private landowners), test and support their wider uptake, engage in the reform of supportive fiscal and other systems incentivising PLC, continue the development of PLC standards and practices, and help with development of organisations and their networks dealing with PLC (following the US “land trust” model). It will specifically aim at further streamlining the efforts regarding PLC of existing networks of landowners (ELO) and conservation organisations (Eurosite) by creating a joint PLC platform/secretariat of the two networks (the “Conservation Landowners Coalition”).

By bringing together the two most important communities in private land conservation within a common structure the project will contribute directly to developing the framework for recognizing and increasing the contribution of PLC to the EU Biodiversity Strategy’s 30% protected land target and will enable the transfer of knowledge between nature NGO and private landowners (in both directions).



  • Conservation Landowners Coalition (at EU and at EU Member States level – structure remaining in place after project period)

  • Network of Private Land Coalition Ambassadors (Network remaining in place after project period)

  • Working group (remaining in place after project period) and guidance document on volunteering and citizen science for PLC

  • Synthesis report on the international workshop on volunteering for PLC

  • Coordinated volunteering campaign on privately conserved land with at least five work camps in various EU member states – reports

  • Database on PLC volunteering opportunities (remaining in place after project period)

  • Synopsis of coordinated BioBlitzes on privately conserved land in at least three EU member states

  • Synthesis report of the international workshop on citizen science – proposition of good practices for citizen science and PLC as contribution to guidance document

  • Test applications of conservation easements in at least 10 cases in at least 5 EU Member States covering a total area of at least 500 ha, report on the test cases, international workshop on lessons learnt; guidance document on the use of easements in the EU

  • Report and recordings of webinars on the conceptual basis of various types of conservation agreements; guidance document on the use of conservation agreements in the EU

  • Synthesis report on specialist group workshop on PPA designation and recognition in different EU Member States including practical guidelines and recommendations for private landowners

  • Synthesis report on internal workshop on voluntary labelling systems for private conservation and legal recognition; guidance document on voluntary labelling systems for private conservation

  • Comparative analysis of financial incentives for PLC and recommendations for harmonizing and reforming tax systems to better incentivise private land conservation

  • Report and webinar recording on tax-deductibility of cross-boundary donations with recommendations for the legal and administrative reform of the national regulatory frameworks

  • Synthesis report on test case of result-based payment schemes

  • Clearing house on funding mechanisms for conservation NGOs active in PLC

  • Project pipeline for PLC implementation ideas

  • Conservation Finance Boot Camp curriculum and synthesis report

  • Report on test cases and webinars on standards and practices for PLC from at least 10 case studies in Europe; standards and good practices for each of the identified PLC tools in the EU.

  • Communication material and publications on PLC (website, flyer, articles, brochure, newsletter, layman report, social media)

  • Manual on nature conservation for private landowners

  • Curriculum of four training courses

  • Synthesis report of final conference

  • At least one national meeting of privately conserved land managers in Italy and one in Portugal, proceedings of national meetings in Italy and Portugal

  • At least three meetings with other EU and international networks, reports of the meetings

  • Participation in at least five external events

  • Project monitoring report

  • After-LIFE plan



Coordinating beneficiary: Eurosite

The project is implemented in the following countries: Belgium (Flanders), Czech Republic , Estonia, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia,  Portugal, Romania (Transylvania), Spain, Netherlands.


Project Updates


  1. Implementation actions

  • Private land conservation governance

  • Civic engagement for private land conservation

  • Private land conservation tools

  • Financial incentives and funding for private land conservation

  • Standards and practices for private land conservation

  1. Actions for communication and for dissemination of project lessons

  • Communication

  • Conservation landowners’ manual

  • Conservation training for landowners

  • ELCN/ELO – Private Land Conservation Conference

  1. Project management and monitoring of the project progress

  • Project management

  • Networking

  • Project monitoring

  • After-LIFE Plan

Funded by

Biodiversity conservation and community development in Transylvania