Federal Agency for Nature Conservation

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Federal Agency for Nature Conservation
- BfN -

Federal Agency for Nature Conservation logo.svg
State level Federation
position Higher federal authority
Supervisory authority Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety
founding August 15, 1993
Headquarters Bonn , North Rhine-Westphalia
Authority management Beate Jessel , President
Servants 340
Web presence www.bfn.de

The Federal Agency for Nature Conservation ( BfN ) is a German higher federal authority within the portfolio of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety .

The Federal Office advises the Ministry on all questions of national and international nature conservation and landscape management, promotes nature conservation projects, supervises research projects and is the licensing authority for the import and export of protected animal and plant species. The Red Lists of Endangered Animal and Plant Species are published at longer intervals . It also performs tasks in the implementation of international species protection, marine nature conservation, the Antarctic Treaty and the Genetic Engineering Act.


The State Agency for Natural Monument Preservation in Prussia had existed in Danzig since 1906 . The Central Department for Nature Conservation in Prussia, headed by Nazi functionary Hans Klose, formulated the Reich Nature Conservation Act of 1935 for Minister of the Interior Hermann Göring. In 1936 it became the Reich Office for Nature Conservation under Walter Schoenichen in the new Reich Forestry Office , and after the end of the war in 1945 the Central Office for Nature Conservation and Landscape Management , which Klose continued to manage until 1954. From 1952 the central office was called the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation and Landscape Management , which has been reorganized several times.

The Federal Office was established in 1993 from the Federal Research Institute for Nature Conservation and Landscape Ecology and from the species protection authorities of the Federal Office for Food and Forestry . In addition, species protection tasks were assigned to him by the Federal Office for Economics and Export Control . The first president was Martin Uppenbrink (1994–1999).

Work areas of the BfN


The Federal Office provides the Federal Environment Ministry with scientific decision-making bases and advises it on all technical issues relating to national and international nature conservation. In addition to its national political competence, the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation sees itself as a close cooperation partner of the federal state authorities. It is also about using concepts and methods developed by the BfN - e. B. for landscape planning, species or area protection - to be implemented uniformly and thus comparable. The Federal Agency for Nature Conservation fulfills a further task in connection with international agreements. These include:


The office designs, promotes and supervises large-scale nature conservation projects and awards research projects and model projects on behalf of the BMU. As part of the environmental research plan (UFOPLAN), research and development projects (R&D projects) in the fields of nature conservation and ecology are awarded. They are intended to provide a basis for decision-making for the nature conservation and environmental policy of the federal government. The testing and development projects (E + E projects), on the other hand, aim to implement promising nature conservation ideas and to put important research results into practice. With the help of so-called association funding, individual nature conservation projects can be supported by private, non-profit associations in the field of nature conservation.

The federal program for biological diversity promotes the implementation of the goals of the national biodiversity strategy. Funding will be given to projects that are representative of the state as a whole within the framework of the National Strategy for Biological Diversity or that implement this strategy in a particularly exemplary and scale-setting manner. The funding extends to four funding priorities

  • Species in Germany's special responsibility
  • Biodiversity hotspots in Germany
  • Securing ecosystem services and
  • further measures of particular representative importance for the strategy

Since 2011, funds amounting to 15 million euros have been entered into the federal budget for the federal program for biological diversity .

German Prize for Nature Writing

Since January 2017, the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, together with the Matthes & Seitz Berlin publishing house, has been awarding the German Prize for Nature Writing , a literature prize endowed with 10,000 euros and a residence grant for the Isle of Vilm . The first prize winner was Marion Poschmann .


As the enforcement authority for the international species protection agreement CITES , the BfN issues permits for the import and export of protected species. In the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of the North and Baltic Seas - 12 to 200 nautical miles beyond the coastline - the BfN takes on the selection and administration of NATURA 2000 areas ( fauna, flora, habitat and bird protection areas ) and participates in the approval of projects . The project is advertised under the word / figurative trademark Habitat Mare . In the area of agro-genetic engineering , the BfN is involved in the approval of applications for the release and placing on the market of genetically modified plants, animals and microorganisms.

Pier for the ferry to the BfN on Vilm with the island in the background


The BfN informs the public about nature conservation and provides the specialist community with general information, scientific data and publications on species and nature conservation as well as biological diversity.

In 2001 the nature detectives project was started with leaflets, stickers and a website. The website offers a small lexicon as well as regular reading and assignment contributions.


The Federal Office is based in the Rüngsdorf district of Bonn (Konstantinstrasse 110). The origin of the property is the former school building of the "Rheinische Obst- und Gartenbauanstalt für Frauen" from 1906 (House I), a new building was added in 1986 (House II) and in 2006 an extension was built (House III) and the entrance area was rebuilt and a conference wing was added.

The Federal Office works at three different locations. The head office is located in the federal city of Bonn, branch offices in Leipzig and on the island of Vilm near Rügen . The International Nature Conservation Academy (INA) is also affiliated to the Vilm branch.

Organizationally, the Federal Office now consists of eight departments, which are grouped into two departments:

  • Central tasks, fundamental issues of nature conservation
  • Protection, development and sustainable use of nature and the landscape

The Federal Office is headed by a President:

  1. 1994 to 1999: Martin Uppenbrink
  2. 2000 to 2007: Hartmut Vogtmann
  3. since 2007: Beate Jessel

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. https://www.bfn.de/presse/pressemitteilung.html?no_cache=1&tx_ttnews%5Btt_news%5D=6431&cHash=bc5a8a0521e8ce6e46fdfb3bb67ebf6d
  2. Deutschlandradio Kultur from January 10, 2017: First prize for Nature Writing to Marion Poschmann
  3. case of the week
  4. Updated environmental statement 2012 with the data from 2011 , Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, page 4.
  5. ^ Adoption of BfN President Hartmut Vogtmann on October 18, 2007