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European Union abandons plan to “overhaul” flagship Birds and Babitats Directives following a huge public campaign

The European Commission has been forced to abandon an “overhaul” of flagship nature laws after an unprecedented campaign that mobilised over half a million people in protest.

After taking office in 2014, EC president Jean-Claude Juncker began a review of European Birds and Habitats Directives so as to make them more business-friendly. But last week the laws were declared “fit for purpose”

“We have listened to public opinion very carefully,” he told the Guardian. “The main message sent is that these two directives are a milestone when it comes to environmental habitats and species [protections]. We need better and smarter implementation but these problems can be solved with non-legislative action. The directives will not be reopened.”

Read more here.

Good news for the immediate future, but hopefully it will also mean that the standards for post-“Brexit” nature conservation in the UK that will have to be attained to remain credible will remain high, and perhaps even be enhanced.

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