European Landscape Convention:
Summary of the European Landscape Convention
The European Landscape Convention CETS No. 176, (further on just the ELC) is a legal document of the Council of Europe, opened for signature on 20th October 2000 in Florence. It entered into the international force on 1st March 2004. Czech Republic signed the ELC on second conference of the signatories in Strasbourg on 28th November 2002 and ratified it on 3rd June 2004. The ELC is accountable for our republic from 1st October 2004. Full text was published in Collection of International Treaties from 24th January 2005. Its implementation is grounded in program announcement of the Government of Czech Republic of 4th August 2010.
Till August 2012 was ELC ratified by 37 States and in three other countries is ratification still in process.
The philosophical platform of ELC is based on complex appropriation of the landscape, going out of principles of sustainable development. However it joins to economical, ecological and social pillar of development another pillar of culture. Landscape protection, management and planning are able among others help to develop job opportunities. Landscape supports creation of local culture and it is the basic component of European natural and cultural heritage. Landscape is the key element of individual and communal well-being and its protection, management and planning are associated with rights and duties for everyone.
ELC follows by a series of previously received international treaties and documents, which deal with protection and management of natural and cultural heritage, regional and landscape planning, local government and international cooperation. There are defining these terms in preamble of ELC: Landscape, Landscape policy, Landscape quality objective, Landscape protection, Landscape management and Landscape planning. The key articles are Article 5 – General measures and Article 6 – Specific measures, which are among others dealing with need of processing and contents of landscape policies.
The object of interest of ELC is the entire landscape, what means natural, rural, urban and suburban localities; with the other words The ELC is covering by its interest extraordinary, but also common and disturbed landscapes.
The aim of the ELC is to support landscape protection, management and planning and to organize European cooperation in this field. The member States commit to harmonize its contents with their own policies.
The implementation of ELC in particular State has to be optimized to its own authority distribution. That is going out of the institutional principles and administrative arrangements by respecting the principle of subsidiarity (delegation of authority to the lowest possible level of government)
Ing. Martin Weber