Saturday 14 August 2010

Huge cuts to DEFRA budget threaten rural life

I seem to recall flagging up this issue on this blog before as the post election rhetoric about the size of departmental cuts at Westminster was first bandied about.

The coalition is starting to provide a few figures and ideas about behind the intitial headlines now - and it is scary stuff.

This is the headline front page story in today's Guardian - apparently there is serious consideration being given to flogging off NNRs

Here is a quote - "Among the plans being considered by the government, which once declared itself "the greenest ever", are selling off national nature reserves; privatising parts of the Forestry Commission; privatising the Met Office, one of the world's leading research organisations on climate change; and withdrawing grants to British Waterways, which manages 2,200 miles of canals and rivers."

And if it's in the papers - it must be true...

1 comment:

  1. Natural England, the English sort-of equivalent of SNH, only actually own about a third of their 224 National Nature Reserves, they lease quite a lot more and have management agreements covering the rest, which are owned by, e.g., RSPB, Wildlife Trusts, Local Authorities, private individuals, etc. So selling off part or whole of some of their estate isn't the end of the world, as the article appears to be trying to make out. All NNRs are also SSSIs and most are also protected by European designations, i.e. SPAs, SACs, so long as the vital management continues, I don't think it matters greatly who actually owns them.