Spanish nature is one of the richest and most spectacular in Europe, but in many areas there is ample room to recover part of what has been lost.
On the other hand, the rural abandonment that affects a large part of the so-called “Empty Spain” is a process with dire social, economic and environmental consequences.
In many of our natural spaces, this problem can become an opportunity based on the restoration of nature and the growing demand of urban people to enjoy it. Paradoxically, this could improve the living conditions of rural people and thwart rural abandonment. Local businesses dedicated to ecotourism, local and ecological food production, or handy crafts may be more viable in rewilded landscapes that are alive, healthy and valued by society.
Spain has abundant and outstanding protected areas. Restoring them can enhance their contribution to the well-being of the local communities around them.