Webinar: Cross-boundary donations for private land conservation in the EU

25th January 2023, 15:00 – 16:30 (CET), webinar (online)

This webinar is organised by the project’s working group on financial incentives for private land conservation.


Welcome and introduction to the topic / Transnational donations for nature conservation in Transylvania, Romania

Options to harmonise the tax treatment of charities across the EU

Dr Fernandes is an economist in the European Added Value Unit of the EPRS. She regularly carries out forward-looking assessments of policy proposals made by Committees of the European Parliament with a focus on estimating the potential gains of action at the EU level. She holds a PhD in policy analysis from the Pardee RAND Graduate School and a BA in economics from the University of Chicago.

Facilitating charitable cross-border donations under current conditions

Network manager

Tax issues of cross-border nature conservation in North America (US/Canada) 

Philip Tabas is Senior Advisor with the North American Conservation Region of The Nature Conservancy based in Arlington VA. He served as the Conservancy’s General Counsel from 2003 to 2013. Philip has been involved in numerous private land conservation and compatible economic development projects, particularly involving the use of conservation easements in the United States and in other countries. He has also worked to secure conservation tax incentive legislation at the US Federal and state levels of government as well as in other countries. Philip is a tax lawyer and a land use planner by professional training.

He is a member of the American College of Environmental Lawyers; a former member of the Board of Directors of The Potomac Conservancy; a member of the Board of Directors of Friends of Herring River; a co-author of Comprehensive Planning and the Environment, published by Abt Books; and he has taught a summer course entitled “Ecosystem Conservation Strategies” at the Vermont Law School.
He can be reached at ptabas@tnc.org

Transnational donations for nature conservation in Transylvania, Romania

Nat Page studied Zoology at Oxford University. After 14 years as a diplomat, in various postings including Romania, he studied agriculture and returned to his original farming and nature conservation interests. Since 1996 he has been owner and manager of a 65 ha livestock farm in the UK. In 2004 he helped to establish Fundația ADEPT Transilvania, an NGO dedicated to protecting Romania’s High Nature Value (HNV) farmed landscapes, by working with local farming communities. ADEPT specialises in bringing a range of income streams to support farmers; their innovative multi-disciplinary approach won top EU prizes for communication with farmers in 2012 and 2013, and top EU prize for the NGO bringing greatest benefits to communities in a protected area in 2014.

Q&A session with the speakers and the audience


  1. Share questions for follow-up “which questions do you still have after hearing the discussion?”
  2. 2nd Webinar will come up with more focus on the cross-boundary investments side


To this day nature conservation is chronically underfunded. While the accessibility to nature conservation and restoration funds and tax incentives is a precondition for successfully tackling climate breakdown and biodiversity loss, the current complexity beyond country borders creates a disincentivising environment for donors who want to support land-based nature conservation in the EU.

Within most EU member states , charitable donations for nature conservation are eligible to tax benefits. However, the same benefits are difficult to obtain for citizens and organisations from abroad, even if they reside in the EU. Although cross-border donations for nature restoration would benefit society as a whole and contribute to a unified Europe, there is currently no “internal market” for charitable giving in the EU.

Simplifying and harmonising the tax systems of EU member states with regard to charitable giving would hence help to combat the twin crises of our times: global climate warming and biodiversity loss. We need private money to resolve these two issues and transparent and equitable tax deductions across the EU to incentivise the private sector.

This webinar ‘Cross-boundary donations for private land conservation in the EU’ will showcase pragmatic solutions to incentivise cross-border donations for private land conservation under existing conditions in the EU and abroad and discuss the political framework needed to facilitate tax-effective cross-border philanthropy in the EU.


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