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The European Union (EU) adopted legislation to address invasive alien species (IAS), in line with its EU 2020 biodiversity targets and its commitments under the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).

The Regulation enables the EU to develop and implement a system to prevent the introduction and spread of IAS, with a focus on the species that cause the most damage.

European Union 29 September 2014: The European Union (EU) adopted legislation to address invasive alien species (IAS), in line with its EU 2020 biodiversity targets and its commitments under the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The Regulation enables the EU to develop and implement a system to prevent the introduction and spread of IAS, with a focus on the species that cause the most damage.

IAS can cause adverse impacts on the economy, environment and human health, according to the EU. The EU will develop a list of species for listing within the IAS system, including information on species’ socio-economic benefits and commercial sector concern.

“This new Regulation fills a long-recognized gap in EU biodiversity protection,” said European Environment Commissioner Janez Potočnik. He explained that the Regulation is carefully targeted to focus on “the most serious threats from invasive species,” a problem that costs the EU €12 billion annually in fish stock losses, damage to protected species, infrastructure and river navigability, and health care and animal care costs. He also underscored the Regulation’s role in halting biodiversity loss in the EU by 2020. [EU Press Release]

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