The European Tree of the Year is back in 2024 with new rules
The contest seeking trees with the most interesting story which celebrates the relationship of European communities and nature is returning to the European Parliament. This year, you will be able to choose among 15 trees selected in the national rounds. The voting will be open between February 1st and February 22nd at www.treeoftheyear.org.
On Thursday February the 1st, the Environmental Partnership Association supported by the European Landowners Organisation launched the final vote in the 2024 European Tree of the Year (ETY) contest on the award's website. You will find the full list of this year’s contenders together with their stories here. The voting process sees some changes this year: the voting is open to the public from February 1st 00:00 AM CET and will run until February 22nd 4:00 PM CET. A shorter voting period was chosen to stimulate a more dynamic and intense campaign. Another novelty is that the vote counts will be hidden throughout the contest with revelations of the current standing and vote counts on February 8th and February 15th.
This year sees 15 trees from 15 communities making their case to become the European Tree of the Year. Among the organising countries we can find Ukraine for a second consecutive year. “Ever since we established the cooperation with the national organisers in Ukraine it feels like our ETY family has become a little bit more complete. We are glad to be able to continue bearing this important message,” says Adam Holub of the Czech Environmental Partnership Foundation. We also see the return of Lithuania into this year's ETY contest!
Traditionally placed in the safe hands of the co-patronage of MEPs Luděk Niedermayer (EPP) and Michal Wiezik (Renew), the Award Ceremony will take place on March 20th in the European Parliament, PAUL - HENRI SPAAK building, Floor 1, YEHUDI MENUHIN amphitheatre. Kateřina Bolečková, a co-organiser of the contest, notes the special nature of the occasion: “The Yehudi Menuhin area which we managed to secure for the evening thanks to the dedicated work of the office of MEP Luděk Niedermayer is the most prestigious space in the European Parliament. The European Tree of the Year 2024 award ceremony will take place there for the first time. It is going to be an evening to remember!”
The event comes shortly before the end of a European Parliament term which saw an ambitious environmental agenda. “Ensuring that we leave our planet in the best possible shape for our children is not just a duty for politicians but a moral responsibility for everyone. In the EP, we are committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by prioritising legislation that promotes the use of cleaner and more sustainable energy, while also advancing measures to protect biodiversity. Trees play a crucial role in our environment and climate. They help us adapt to climate change and retain water in the landscape. The European Tree of the Year contest goes beyond recognizing the importance of trees in our planet's ecosystem. It's a project that connects communities across Europe and brings different generations together. Through this, it sparks people's interest in the environment and the planet we call home. This is something both our nature and society truly needs,” says Luděk Niedermayer (EPP), one of the two MEP patrons of the contest.