Last modified: 23 November 2012
With a loss of eight of ten turtle doves in 15 years, the only hope for farmland wildlife is paying farmers to protect nature
The failure of European leaders in Brussels to finalise the European budget means that the threat of massive funding cuts to our countryside and wildlife still loom large, says the RSPB.
Martin Harper is the RSPB’s Conservation Director. Commenting on the EU Budget summit, Martin Harper, said: “European funding provides the UK with the largest single pot of money for wildlife conservation. This money, which is paid to farmers to put nature back into our countryside is vital, but it is still seriously at risk as EU leaders wrangle over the big numbers.
“This stay of execution must be a wake-up call to all those who claim they care about our countryside. We’ve already seen a proposal which could have led to the pot of money for wildlife-friendly farming being cut by up to one third. The loss of wildlife from our farmed countryside is a crisis which to date no politician has faced up to. We need European leaders to recognise that funding to tackle this must not be traded away when they next come together to thrash out a deal. Our landscapes, farmers and wildlife depend on the future of this funding.”
Nature is in trouble – so millions of people are stepping up to help. Our wildlife has been disappearing at an alarming rate. But small steps make a big difference. If we all act together and get stuck in, we can save our wildlife.
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