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European Living Lakes Association (ELLA)

The European Living Lakes Association (ELLA), is a non-profit association integrated into the international Living Lakes Network and created in 2022 thanks to the support of the LIFE Programme of the European Union on NGOs for the Green Deal (NGO4GD).


ELLA is based on the European Living Lakes Partnership, founded in 2012 by several European wetland and lake organisations that had been working together since 1998 in the Living Lakes Network. This partnership was born with the intention of creating a joint working space in order to share knowledge and approach common challenges for a more sustainable management of lakes and their basins and the protection of these and other water bodies and their biodiversity in Europe.


ELLA currently involves ten European NGO partners of the Living Lakes Network from seven countries (Estonia, Spain, Italy, Germany, Hungary, Poland and Turkey). ELLA aims to put wetland conservation on the political agenda and to empower Civil Society Organizations to enhance the conservation of freshwater ecosystems. ELLA works closely with scientific institutions, authorities and other relevant stakeholders to promote wetland restoration, environmental education, research and the improvement of legal frameworks.


ELLA’s activities includes 10 member organisations and all European Living Lakes partners, the Living Lakes Network Italy with 10 members and the Network Living Lakes Germany NLSD with 21 member organisations. ELLA has a close exchange with the United Kingdom and Ireland Lakes Network UK&ILN. UK&ILN is an association of people and organisations who have an interest in managing lakes through a whole catchment approach in England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland. ELLA and its activities are embedded in the international Living Lakes Network.

Click here to assess the Living Lakes in Europe

With ELLA’s founding, the current situation of lakes and wetlands in Europe was assessed in order to establish the priorities, objectives and strategy of the association. These are presented in the Baseline Report and the Statutes of the Association.


The activities carried out by the European Living Lakes Association (ELLA) are documented and shared with interested parties to allow the transfer of ideas and experiences.

Work Plan (EN)

ELLA Work Plan Biennal Strategy 2023-2024

Flashlight Study (EN)

Current Situation & Need for Restoration

Position Paper (EN)

Towards a strong EU Nature Restoration Law

Position Paper (EN)

Carbon Sequestration & Wetlands Restoration


ELLA contributes to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):

logo ELLA


Global Nature Fund

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EU Lifeweb

Co-funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or CINEA. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

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