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EU money wasted on plants and animals

August 17th, 2001

“£1bn ‘wasted’ on protecting plants and animals” (Daily Express, 18 October 2001, page 35)
The European Union is wasting more than £1billion a year on “ineffective” schemes to protect plants and animals, leading scientists claimed last night. The projects, which cost £119million a year in Britain alone, are designed to help wildlife and landscapes flourish.

“EU schemes to preserve wildlife ‘failing’” (Financial Times, 17 October 2001, page 13)
European Union projects to make farming more sensitive to wildlife and the environment…have largely failed.

This study, whose conclusions the newspapers cite, evaluated only two specific Dutch projects, out of hundreds of schemes throughout Europe covering a broad range of environment objectives. Calling the whole project a waste of money on such evidence is hardly balanced reporting. In fact, many successful schemes have been identified by other research. The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, for instance, has recently reported on programmes introduced in Britain that have proved very successful in increasing the bird population in certain regions.

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