From Nature Conservation to Dynamic Genetic Conservation: The Hellenic Case

  • Paraskevi G. AlizotiEmail author
  • Filippos A. Aravanopoulos
Part of the Advances in Global Change Research book series (AGLO, volume 65)


The importance of the Hellenic ecosystems from a biodiversity point of view at all levels is presented. The value of the existing biodiversity and its significance has been recognized quite early and the first protected areas were designated at a national level in 1937. The protected areas designated ever since under national and regional (EU) legislation, as well as under international Conventions and their protection status is presented in detail. Most of the protected areas though, that cover almost one third of the country, have been designated mainly for nature conservation (ecosystem, species level) and not for conserving the species genetic resources, even if within the general protection framework they were also indirectly conserved. Focused activities aiming towards the dynamic conservation of forest tree species (maintenance of forest tree genetic diversity to ensure the evolutionary continued processes and not just the preservation of existing frequencies of genotypes and alleles) were initiated after the participation of the country in the EUFORGEN program and the EUFGIS project. Dynamic gene conservation units (GCUs) have been designated so far for a number of species, but the process of designation needs to be intensified, given the role of the country as a biodiversity hotspot and an area of high endemism.


Biodiversity Forest genetic resources Dynamic genetic conservation Protected areas Gene Conservation Units (GCUs) 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paraskevi G. Alizoti
    • 1
    Email author
  • Filippos A. Aravanopoulos
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Forestry and Natural EnvironmentAristotle University of ThessalonikiThessalonikiGreece

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