Tag: tom langton

Tom Langton | High Court Challenge and ‘Next Steps’ Policy

“It’s such a sad indictment of the current way in which science is conducted and vested interests have infected our society.” Ecologist Tom Langton has been looking at the scientific and legal aspects of the dreaded badger culls since 2016, and this summer represents his fifth year working on what is being described as the worst miscarriage of UK biological science for fifty years. In this ‘shortcast’ (=short podcast) recorded for Off the Leash Podcasts, Tom explains a bit about the new 2020 policy and what exactly was being challenged – a challenge which, incidentally, has taken over a year of battling to gain permission for.

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Update | Help stop badger culling adding to England’s Biodiversity catastrophe

Excellent news from the desk of one of the UK’s busiest ecologists – Tom Langton. Tom was recently given permission (after much pushback from Defra), to challenge the so-called ‘badger cull’ in the High Court and set up a crowdfunder. After a slow start the fund raising is going really well, and the challenge has been moved forward because of the government’s plans to move forward with supplementary killing of protected animals across large areas of the country. And the bit about England’s ‘biodiversity catastrophe’? Astonishingly for all our self-congratulations about being a ‘country of animal lovers’, we have lost so many of our animals (and plants) that the UK as a whole is one of the most nature-depleted countries n the world and a recent report from the RSPB, using data compiled by the Natural History Museum, published ahead of last week’s G7 Summit, found that the UK is the worst nation in the G7 for the volume of wildlife and wild spaces lost due to human activity. Which is yet another reason why we need to be protecting what is left of our biodiversity.

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Badger Crowd | High Court Challenge

The Court of Appeal at the Royal Courts of Justice has awarded renowned ecologist and wildlife campaigner Tom Langton (with whom we’ve recorded a couple of very insightful podcasts over the last four years) permission to challenge an important aspect of the 2020 “Next Steps” Bovine TB eradication policy. Tom is a professional conservation ecologist with experience in wildlife justice, and has helped bring Natural England & Defra to account in tribunals & High Court trials over badger culling since 2017. Cruel, unnecessary badger killings will massively increase from now until 2026, with huge new cull areas. Already 140,000 badgers have been shot and this will now double to around 280,000. Following on from these culls, there is a little mentioned long term policy to expand the extermination of badgers locally with reactive-style culling of 100% of badgers. This will be happening in and around our woods, fields and nature areas, perhaps even close to where you live, with multiple side effects and implications. It just has to stop.

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Crowdfunder | Help Stop DEFRA Plans to Extend Badger Culling

Tom Langton is a highly respected ecologist who has been involved in many different wildlife disputes including Sizewell, the Pont Valley in County Durham, and perhaps most notably, the government-backed mass killing of badgers. Now Tom has launched a Crowdfunder which Mark Avery has backed, saying on his hugely influential blog that Tom is “a Badger expert and seasoned campaigner. His crowdfunder to challenge DEFRA on plans to extend the Badger cull deserves support – and I’ve put a few quid of my own in that direction.” And so have we….

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Podcast: The Badger Cull at the end of 2017

In September 2017 the Badger Trust wrote on their website that “DEFRA [the Department for Environment, Food and Rural affairs] has announced the continuation and expansion of the killing of thousands of badgers across England. 11 new zones have been confirmed with a maximum number of 32,247 badgers to be killed in 2017 alone! This means that, by the end of this year, 47076 badgers will be dead as a result of the cull”. Charlie Moores sat down to discuss the extension of the cull, the reasons for it, its impact on the countryside, and the resistance to it – perhaps as consumers looking at which foods we choose to buy – with Dominic Dyer, chief executive of the Badger Trust, and Tom Langton a consulting ecologist who has worked in UK and international nature conservation for 40 years.

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Podcast: Sizewell C and the Suffolk Coast and Heaths AONB

French energy giant EDF Energy has submitted a proposal to build a new power station at Sizewell, adjoining two existing power stations Sizewell A and Sizewell B. The site lies in the heart of the Suffolk Coast and Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and right next to the RSPB’s flagship reserve at Minsmere. EDF Energy says that Sizewell C has “the potential to generate the reliable low carbon energy the country needs for decades“, while opponents say the development will “lay waste” to vast swathes of the countryside – much of which is legally protected.

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Podcast: Tom Langton | The Badger Cull – Judicial Challenge

Charlie Moores talks with renowned ecologist Tom Langton to understand more about the basis for legal challenges to the government-sanctioned badger cull, about the ‘carnivore release effect’ which has astonishingly led to Michael Gove [the then Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs] ordering the shooting of foxes that might impact protected wildlife as a result of the removal of badgers from the landscape, ‘low-risk area’ culling, and – most controversially perhaps – Tom’s opinion that it’s the responsibility of academics to now admit that the cull is ‘a nonsense’.

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