Search Results for: biodiversity loss

UK govt fails to hit biodiversity targets

In news that will come as no surprise to anyone paying attention, the UK has failed to meet nearly all of the biodiversity targets set at the 2010 Convention on Biological Biodiversity held in Nagoya, Japan (COP 9, which opened that year by saying that, “In April 2002, the Parties to the Convention committed themselves to achieve by 2010 a significant reduction of the current rate of biodiversity loss at the global, regional and national level as a contribution to poverty alleviation and to the benefit of all life on Earth” – a target which was also missed). According to an analysis by the RSPB the UK has failed to reach 17 out of 20 UN biodiversity targets agreed on at COP 9 in 2010, saying that the gap between rhetoric and reality has resulted in a “lost decade for nature” (a refrain repeated in the BBC’s ‘Extinction: The Facts’ programme which aired last night).

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Language Matters | Eco-Woke

…talking of which brings us to ‘eco-woke’. Oh dear, Beefy. This is the hook on which you will eventually be hung. It’s such a nonsense of a phrase. It might get senescent club members rustling the pages of their Telegraph in appreciation, but it actually only telegraphs the utter ignorance of the person that uses it. ‘Eco-woke’ is no doubt intended to be an insult, a redneck attempt at putting down anyone who doesn’t kill things for a giggle – but it is a huge red flag being waved by the sort of dimwit who rejoices in their climate change scepticism or clings to the belief that killing something is the best way to conserve it. We are facing catastrophic warming and biodiversity loss, the destruction of ecosystems across the entire planet. We are on the brink of an existential crisis. Flaunting the fact that you haven’t woken up to that isn’t clever or brave, it is moronic…

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Who eats all the soya?

One of the biggest drivers of biodiversity loss is habitat loss to agriculture – in other words, enormous changes to natural habitats to grow our food. It’s estimated that as recently as 1000 years ago, less than 4% of the world’s ice-free and non-barren land area was used for farming. Now we have taken nearly HALF of all habitable land on the planet for our agriculture. The vast Cerrado region of Brazil, for example, once covered an area half the size of Europe, but around half the native savannah and forest of the Cerrado has been converted to agriculture since the late 1950s. Converted mainly for beef cattle ranching and to grow soybeans. Since the 1950s global soybean production has increased 15 times over. But who – or what – is eating all those beans…?

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The World at War (with nature)

WWF have just released their LIVING PLANET REPORT 2020 and it’s not good news for – well, for anyone. It’s not good news nor is it easy reading. Over well over 100 pages of text and illustration (plus pages of index and references), WWF explains – essentially – that we are taking more for ourselves and allowing less for everything else.  There are attempts to cheer us up with new initiatives with catchy names like ‘Bending the Curve of Biodiversity Loss’, but the facts are that the global Living Planet Index continues to decline, which means humans are continuing to ravage the planet and unpick the ecosystems all life relies upon.

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Language Matters | Birders and ‘gamebirds’

Anyone who launches a campaign (any campaign) can be fairly certain that a) not everyone will agree with the campaign’s aims, and b) will tell you that ‘insert whatever it is you’re campaigning about’ is a waste of time. Sure, not everyone cares about (in this case) our wildlife, preferring to shoot it or ignore it rather than protect it. They’re almost bound not to agree. But ‘a waste of time’? Trying to change something you fundamentally disagree with is never a waste of time. Besides, it gives me a chance to explain in 1000+ words exactly why I think that raising a debate about the use of ‘gamebird’ is not a waste of time at all. I will say it again, in this birder’s opinion the term ‘gamebird’ has absolutely no place in birding, or in birding magazines, or in identification books. We’ll need to campaign more directly to get it confined to the waiting dustbin of history, but in the meantime fellow birders, fellow writers, and fellow activists let’s just please pledge not to use it anymore.

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Language Matters | A War on Wildlife Project campaign

Back in February this year we wrote a post titled ‘Language Matters: ‘gamebird’, game bird, gamebird?’ It was a response to the use of the term ‘gamebird’ in the judicial review Wild Justice and their legal team were seeking. Now of course Wild Justice has won a fantastic victory in the courts. We applaud the court decision of course, but we have been rankled by the constant use of the term ‘gamebird’ in media reporting. So rankled that we’re launching a campaign about the use by the shooting and hunting industries of terms like ‘gamebird’, ‘pest’, ‘vermin’, and ‘cull’ callled ‘Language Matters’. There will be a number of asks and a number of different elements which we’ll be detailing throughout the next few weeks. Ultimately though we would like to see the legal status of the horribly divisive term ‘gamebird’ removed because as we explain #languagematters…

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Wildlife Slaughter | Lebanon/UK – any difference?

A team working for the Berlin-based Committee Against Bird Slaughter (CABS) have just uploaded a series of images from Lebanon. They show the massacre of migrating birds. Slaughter on a scale that few of us get to see firsthand. The reaction on social media is a mix of bewilderment, rage, frustration, shock…How can this be happening? How can men (it’s almost always young men) line up to blow these beautiful, evocative birds out of the sky like this? How can they show such indifference to the suffering and death? Why aren’t the authorities doing anything to stop it? Meanwhile, here in the UK…

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