Protection of natural resources
At CERN, the design of new buildings takes into account their integration into the landscape. In the past, some infrastructures were already developed with the aim to smoothly integrate with the landscape. One example is the retention of effluents from large civil-engineering worksites in ponds built to permit conciliation between water management and protection of the natural environment. Today, these ponds aim to retain stormwater discharges from CERN’s site.
CERN has the largest variety of orchids in the entire Lake Geneva region. To maintain this status, CERN uses low-intensity maintenance of its green spaces, which amounts to more than 100 hectares. To permit the biological cycles of the species present on-site, grass mowing is delayed or replaced altogether by the grazing of sheep brought to CERN’s sites for this purpose. For further information, please see CERN’s environment reports.
In addition, CERN has signed an agreement with the French Office National des Forêts (ONF), which was renewed in 2010, for managing and conserving its forests, and for securing and preserving the banks of the Lion watercourse. The forests of CERN are among the last lowland woodlands in Pays de Gex, which explains the conservatory interest of both France and CERN.
Bee orchid, Ophrys apifera: the most widespread variety at CERN. (Image: CERN)
Pyramidal orchid, Anacamptis pyramidalis: another common variety at CERN.(Image: CERN)
Giant orchid, Himantoglossum robertianum: an extremely rare specimen to find in the Geneva region. (Image: CERN)
Monkey orchid, Orchis simia, gets its name from the bizarre shape of its labellum, which may remind you of a monkey. (Image: CERN)
Lizard orchid, Himantoglossum hircinum, occurs periodically on the site. It has a rather strong odour, which is why in French it is called orchis bouc (goat orchid). (Image: CERN)