EU President Herman van Rompuy has proposed cuts which will affect agri-environmental schemes. If Mr van Rompuy’s plans are approved at an EU budget meeting later this month agri-environment will be hit by a cut of almost 10 percent.
Agri-environment schemes reward farmers for environmentally-sensitive land management. Without these schemes farmers may be forced to reduce, or even stop, environmental work on their farms. If this is the case, it will be nature that suffers most.
This month sees the 25th anniversary of agri-environment in Wales, the largest single budget for wildlife conservation in the UK. These schemes are the primary protection for wildlife in Wales. It is possible that without this funding, once common birds such as lapwing, curlew and yellowhammer as well as a wide range of other less well-known species including cornflower and pearl-bordered fritillary, could be lost from our countryside within a decade.
For more information about how you can support wildlife-friendly farming go to www.rspb.or.uk/wales