D2C DaRe to Connect - Supporting Danube Region’s ecological Connectivity by linking Natura 2000 areas along the Green Belt

What is the GreenBelt?

With the European Green Belt, an extraordinary ecological network and living memorial landscape has been developed along the former Iron Curtain. In the area of the INTERREG Danube Transnational Programme (DTP) the European Green Belt connects 10 countries. It forms a backbone of the Pan-European ecological network and can provide a significant contribution to EU Green Infrastructure (GI) and TEN-G.

We dare to connect!

However, the Green Belt still suffers from a certain level of not sufficiently connected habitats and valuable landscapes. The main objective of the „DaRe to Connect (D2C)“ project is therefore the implementation of the EU Danube Strategy by further transnational development of the connectivity of the Green Belt as backbone of EU Green infrastructure (EU GI) by maintaining and enhancing ecosystems and their services.

Technology, nature and people

There are several main parts of the project: 

  • The project defines feasible ecological corridors between Natura 2000 areas on transnational and macro-regional level by innovative GIS and remote sensing approaches, partly based on newly available EU-Copernicus (Sentinel) data.      
  • Then, the project will provide concrete guidance and recommendations on planning and establishment of transnational ecological corridors connecting Natura 2000 areas on local and regional level, derived from pilot actions.
  • Results will be mainstreamed via a transnational strategic vision "Green Belt in the Danube Region 2030” to be endorsed by national political stakeholders.  
  • The improvement of capacities of responsible public bodies and NGOs will lead to better understanding as well as to an improved knowledge exchange and cooperation.
  • PR-work and events will give local/regional people and politicians an understanding of how connectivity and ESS can contribute to human wellbeing.

Project participation and learning interaction will enhance individual capacities of the project partners' staff and other involved institutions to further develop the European Green Belt in the DTP area.

The project activities are focused mainly in 6 pilot regions: 

You can read more about pilot regions here.

DaRe to Connect -  Supporting Danube Region’s ecological Connectivity by linking Natura 2000 areas along the Green Belt
Start date
End date
Budget in Euro
Overall: 2086654,1
ERDF Contribution: 1684031,98
IPA Contribution: 89624
ENI Contribution: 0
Call number
Call 2
Environment and culture responsible Danube region
Specific objective
Foster the restoration and management of ecological corridors


As soon as the project achieves an output, it will be published in this section. Check the project webpage for more information
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Project Partners

Name Type Email Country
Bavarian branch of BUND, Friends of the Earth Germany, BUND Project Office Green Belt Lead partner melanie.kreutz@bund-naturschutz.de GERMANY
Ametyst Non-governmental organization ERDF partner marinakova@ametyst21.cz CZECH REPUBLIC
Environment Agency Austria ERDF partner maria.stejskal-tiefenbach@umweltbundesamt.at AUSTRIA
University of Vienna, Division of Conservation Biology, Vegetation Ecology and Landscape Ecology ERDF partner thomas.wrbka@univie.ac.at AUSTRIA
Őrség National Park Directorate ERDF partner i.szentirmai@gmail.com HUNGARY
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Project News

  • D2C - Excursions to the European Green Belt in Šumava (CZ)
    - 14-09-2020
    Excursions to the European Green Belt in Šumava (CZ)

    Ametyst NGO and National Park Šumava organised two excursions to the former Iron Curtain to show the general public how the modern history is imprinted in the landscape of Šumava.  During approximately a 10 km long walk visitors learn about...

  • D2C - Bats - no problem to cross the Danube river
    - 26-08-2020
    Bats - no problem to cross the Danube river

    A part of the D2C project is mapping of selected species in habitats of pilot regions. Bats are one of them in Romania, in the pilot area the Iron Gates Nature Park. Experts of the natural park did and intensive field survey for new bats colonies...

  • D2C - Snakes need ecological corridors too
    - 10-08-2020
    Snakes need ecological corridors too

    Generally when talking about ecological corridors we take in account mostly large animals - deer, large carnivores, etc. However, migration corridors are inevitable for all kinds of life, from microscopic beings to large creatures - including...

  • D2C - Workshop about ecosystem services in Croatia
    - 31-07-2020
    Workshop about ecosystem services in Croatia

    The  workshop with local stakeholders on the topic of ecosystem services was held on June 18th, 2020, in the Informative and educational centre – hostel “The Drava story” in Noskovci, Croatia. It was a part of the implementation of the DaRe to...

  • D2C - Workshop for pupils in the Djerdap National Park
    - 20-07-2020
    Workshop for pupils in the Djerdap National Park

    Organic component of the Dare to Connect project is education and awareness building both adults and schoolchildren. One of such activities was organized by the project partner the Djerdap National Park on June 26, 2020. Employees of national...

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Programme co-funded by European Union funds (ERDF, IPA, ENI)