Otter, a European protected species
This is a time of unprecedented change for the natural environment and the way it is protected. So what are the threats - and how can you help improve the outlook for wildlife?
Our decision to leave the EU opens the door to a fundamental change in the way our wildlife is managed and protected on land and at sea. Crucial wildlife protection, farming subsidies and fisheries policies are being thrown up in the air, with little sense yet as to what will replace them.
With all this uncertainty though, comes opportunity. If we get it right, we can implement a range of policies for farming, fishing and wildlife protection that will help improve our natural environment and stem the tide of species loss.
If we get it wrong, the problems we have been facing in recent decades could get much, much worse.
At Devon Wildlife Trust we’re working with The Wildlife Trusts nationally, developing our vision for a better set of laws and policies that will help our natural environment thrive. At the core of our asks of government will be:
• Protection of key wildlife sites and species to be at least as strong as – and ideally better than - what is provided by the existing EU laws.
• Farming policy that encourages farmers to deliver a range of public goods including wildlife, flood protection and good soil management.
• Strong action to tackle climate change.
• A marine environment that allow fish stocks to recover and leaves more space for whales, dolphins, sea birds and vital sea floor habitats.
As the new government takes shape and starts formulating policy, we have a great opportunity to make our voice heard.
How can you help today?
In response to the vote to leave the EU, eleven-year-old Wildlife Trust supporter Zach Haynes set up an e-petition calling for the government to set up new laws for the UK that give our precious wildlife and environment the same protection as under the EU Nature Directives.
You can add your voice to Zach’s – and thousands of others - here.
MPs are much more likely to speak up for the natural world if their constituents have told them it is an important concern in their local area.
Contact your MP to tell them how much you care about the protection of Devon’s wildlife and wild places: the woods, moors, hedges and beaches that make our county so special.
Talk to your friends and encourage them to contact their MP too. We need to make a noise if we want to see wildlife and the natural world protected in the future. We cannot rely on politicians in Westminster to do this. It is up to us.
Find out how to contact your MP here.
Every new supporter gives Devon's wildlife more of a voice. If you love Devon's spectacular wildlife and want to enjoy it now and protect it for the future... please join Devon Wildlife Trust today.