So the UK voted to leave the European Union. I have blogged before about how vital the EU legislation has been in terms of protecting nature and the environment and it is well known that many politicians who campaigned for us to leave the EU are not in favour of these laws, describing them as 'so much red tape'.
The EU is not perfect, nor indeed are its environmental laws, but these laws, as I say have made a difference to the state of our beaches, waterways and nature in general. The outlook for nature in this country could be dire if we discard these laws without enshrining them into UK law.
There are already many articles which explain the potential impact of us leaving the EU on our nature protection, here are some that I feel are particularly informative and concise:
UK's out vote is a 'red alert' for the environment (Guardian newspaper)
What Leaving the EU means for our environment (Scottish Wildlife Trust).
What does Brexit mean for the UK's environment? (Political Studies Association Environmental Politics)
EU departure means a tough fight to protect our environment ( Friends of the Earth Scotland)
Letter from Conservation leaders to Roseanna Cunningham MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform in Scottish Parliament.
I think this article from Ruth Davis highlights well the need to be positive. When the EU held a consultation on the fitness of purpose of the Nature Directives, millions of people across Europe demonstrated their support, with much of that support coming from people in the UK. The UK nature conservation organisations have huge numbers of members (more members than political parties). We are a country that loves nature and we will not stand at the sidelines and watch as a right wing government dismantles the laws that protect our nature, landscapes and environment. Having said that it won't be easy, we have a battle on our hands and we know from the recent referendum campaign just how sneaky our politicians can be.
Conservation organisations will be campaigning to make sure the best of the EU nature legislation is enshrined in UK law. It's early days yet and I haven't seen any detailed plans, but you can sign up here for the Friends of the Earth campaign. You can also send a message to all the political leaders in Scotland to ask them to put the environment at the heart of their thinking and actions around Scotland’s future (via Friends of the Earth Scotland).The campaign organisation 38 Degrees has now put up a petition to keep the EU nature laws, you can sign it here.
If you've been taking part in 30 Days Wild you have probably found yourself enthused about nature more than ever as a result. If you love nature you will want to make sure we can protect it as much as possible for the future.
Campaigning for 30 Days Wild.