The Natura 2000 Awards Ceremony

Honouring those who honour our environment

The Natura 2000 Award recognises outstanding conservation success stories across the European Natura 2000 network of protected sites. What better way to honour the biodiversity heroes behind these stories than with a high-profile event celebrating their contribution to our environment: the Natura 2000 Awards Ceremony, held this year in Brussels on 18 May 2022.

Arctik was proud to be part of the team that brought the ceremony from the page to the stage, overseeing everything from concept and design, through to planning and promotion, to ensuring things ran like clockwork on the day. 

The event was held at the European Commission’s Berlaymont HQ, a prestigious location worthy of the 21 finalists nominated in five categories – conservation on land, marine conservation, cross-border cooperation, socio-economic benefits, and communication.

With hybrid events firmly here to stay, the ceremony blended the best of both worlds: in-person attendees enjoyed the great buzz on site, while first-rate audio-visual tech beamed guests from across Europe directly onto the on-stage big screen, allowing them to join the conversation as though they were in the room. 

The guest list was a who’s who of Europe’s conservation cheerleaders, with representatives attending from across EU institutions and environmental bodies. Opening the ceremony, EU Commissioner for the Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginijus Sinkevičius declared:

“I have to say very honestly that this is one of my favourite events in the calendar.” 

The Award Ceremony marked the culmination of a year-long journey for the finalists, with Arctik supporting the process from the call for nominations right through to the selection of the five category winners by an expert jury. The coveted Citizens’ Award was scooped by the Austrian FLORA programme for protecting high-nature-value farmland – the pick of thousands of votes cast across the EU as part of an online campaign orchestrated by the Arctik team. 

Whether attending live at the ceremony or following #Natura2000Award on their social feeds, anyone engaging with the Awards came away with an appreciation not only for the tireless work of the Natura conservationists, but for the rich biodiversity preserved through this unique European network.