Belgium

Bordering the North Sea between France and the Netherlands, Belgium is made up of flat coastal plains in the northwest, rolling hills in the central areas and the mountains of the Ardennes in the southeast. Animals still living in Belgium’s beech and oak forests include boar, fox, badger, squirrel, weasel, marten and hedgehog. A number of birds can be found in the Belgian lowlands, including sandpipers, woodcocks, snipes and lapwings. Porpoises, seals and whales can be spotted in the waters off the northern coast.

The Scheldt and Meuse are the country’s longest rivers. Flooding is a threat along the rivers and in areas of reclaimed coastal land, which are protected from the sea by concrete dikes. Other environmental problems facing include air and water pollution from industry and agriculture.
A bag available from WWF Belgium / ©: WWF Belgium
A bag available from WWF Belgium
© WWF Belgium

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Country Eco-tips

Energy and Water
  • Most energy usage in Belgium comes from oil natural gas and coal as well as nuclear.
 
  • Biomass is traditionally strong, and hydropower and onshore wind generation have been growing in recent years.
  • Belgium’s water resources are concentrated in the southern part of the country. Most streams rise in the Ardennes and flow northward.
  • Tap water in Belgium is safe to drink.
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Recycling
  • In Brussels, yellow bags are for recycling paper and carton; other recyclables except glass go in the blue bags. Glass bottles can be returned at supermarkets or in the special containers you find throughout the city.
 
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Transport
  • Belgium is a relatively small country and easy to get around by bus and train (http://www.b-rail.be/main/index.html).
    As Belgium is surrounded by France, Luxembourg, Holland and Germany, buses connect most Belgian cities to all of these countries.
    There are good public transport systems in all of Belgium’s major towns and cities, with underground, tram and bus services in Antwerp and Brussels.
  • A network of special walking, cycling, and horseback-riding routes in Wallonia provides a healthy alternative to touring by car, and links scenic parts of the region that are off the beaten track.
    Brussels has a number of bike lanes and is working on a full cycle route network.
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Food
  • Mussels or moules are the national dish of Belgium and are in season from September to February. Most of the mussels consumed in Belgium come from the North Sea, off the northern coast of the Netherlands.
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Green Spots
  • Parc de Bruxelles: Surrounded by the Belgian Parliament and Royal Palace, this is the largest urban public park in the centre of Brussels.
  • Forêt de Soignes: This 4,421-hectare protected forest, located in the southeastern part of Brussels, is a popular place to escape the city. Known for its many beech trees, there are a number of paths for walking, jogging and horse-riding.
  • Hoge Kempen National Park: This is Belgium’s first and only national park. Located in the northeastern part of the country, the 6,000-hectare park of pine woods and heather meadows is home to some 6,000 species of flora and fauna, including endangered nightjar birds, smooth snakes and grasshoppers. Promoted by WWF, Gîtes Panda guest houses are found throughout French-speaking Wallonia. The guest houses are often located near regional parks or forests and adhere to high environmental standards.
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Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the above information. However, WWF makes no warranties, expressed or implied, regarding errors or omissions and assumes no legal liability or responsibility for loss or damage resulting from its use.
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