RSPB lodges EU complaint over burning of grouse moor
Michael McCarthy, formerly the Independent’s longstanding Environment Editor, now its Environment Columnist, is one of Britain’s leading writers on the environment and the natural world. He has won a string of awards for his work, including Environment Journalist of the Year (three times) and Specialist Writer of the Year in the British Press Awards in 2001. In 2007 he was awarded the Medal of the RSPB for “Outstanding Services to Conservation,” in 2010 he was awarded the Silver Medal of the Zoological Society of London, and in 2011 the Dilys Breeze Medal of the British Trust for Ornithology. In 2009 McCarthy published Say Goodbye To The Cuckoo (John Murray), a study of Britain’s declining migrant birds.
Monday 15 October 2012
The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) has demanded a European investigation of the Government's wildlife watchdog amid a bitter row over the burning of a protected bird habitat.
The RSPB believes Natural England's abrupt decision in March to stop its prosecution of the Walshaw Moor Estate in West Yorkshire was in breach of its legal duty to protect the environment.
The charity claims Natural England contravened EU rules in its dealings with the estate, near Hebden Bridge, which burnt peat bog to help boost the numbers of grouse for shooting on the moors, and has submitted a formal complaint to Brussels.
The blanket bog in question is a rare and threatened habitat that is home to endangered wading birds such as dunlin and golden plover. Burning the bog encourages new heather shoots – a food source for grouse.
Natural England said its agreement with Walshaw Moor Estate meant that burning off would be subject to "specific controls" and that it was aware of the EU complaint.
Walshaw Moor Estate declined to comment.
- 1 Three of Pope Francis' relatives die in Argentina car crash, including two young great-nephews
Syria conflict: President Assad finally turns on Isis as government steps up campaign against militant strongholds
Michael Brown shooting: Amnesty International sends team within US for first time as National Guard deployed
Iraq crisis: Islamic State's message to America - 'We will drown you all in blood'
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness
Celebrity Big Brother 2014: Audley Harrison meets Kellie Maloney: 'Was Kellie really the best you could come up with?'
Isis threat: Cameron wants an alliance with Iran
Crisis? What crisis? A visiting US doctor gives the NHS a rave review
Ukip MEP calls for reintroduction of death penalty on fiftieth anniversary of last deaths
Russell Brand calls for Israel boycott: Comedian urges big businesses that 'facilitate the oppression of people in Gaza' to pull funding
Michael Brown shooting: Chaos erupts on the streets of Ferguson after autopsy shows teenager was shot six times – twice in the head
World peace? These are the only 11 countries in the world that are actually free from conflict
£30000 - £33000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Junior DBA (SQ...
£60000 - £75000 per annum + BONUS + BENEFITS: Harrington Starr: Business Anal...
£60000 - £90000 per annum + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Global leading Energy Tra...
£40000 - £60000 per annum + BONUS + BENEFITS: Harrington Starr: CXL, Triple Po...