The Emerald Network is an ecological network of terrestrial, coastal and marine protected areas in Europe and North Africa . It consists of Areas of Special Conservation Interest (ASCIs), set up by the contracting parties to the Bern Convention (Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats) (Recommendation No. 16 1989 of the Standing Committee to the Bern Convention) which are set up with the aim to ensure the conservation and protection of those habitats and species listed under Appendices I and II of the Bern Convention. Under the Convention, Contracting Parties are encouraged to take steps, either by legislation or otherwise, to designate ASCIs to ensure that necessary and appropriate conservation measures are taken for areas within their territory or under their responsibility.
As the European Union is a Contracting Party to the Bern Convention, the Natura 2000 network is considered to be the EU contribution to the Emerald Network
There are 37 sites from Switzerland which have been officially adopted as Emerald Sites (December 2014). As of December 2015 there are just over 2,000 candidate Emerald Sites, covering:Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Georgia, Montenegro, Morocco, Norway, Republic of Moldova, Serbia, Russian Federation and Ukraine.
Emerald sites in the WDPA
There are currently no Emerald Sites within the WDPA. Of the over 2,000 candidate sites proposed by contracting parties, 37 from Switzerland have been officially adopted. The boundaries for these sites have not yet been officially released by the Council of Europe.