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Green Party criticises calls to cull certain ‘pest’ species in the wake of massive losses in global biodiversity

Preventing biodiversity loss should be high on political agenda.

 
The Green Party has today heavily criticised legislators and the media for calling for the culling of wild birds due to a perception that they are an inconvenience or a nuisance. The Greens claim that legislators have no interest whatsoever in what is happening to nature or the massive loss of flora and fauna over the past 50 years.
 
‘The reality is that, globally, we have lost over 50% of all living things since 1960 and the response of some Irish policymakers and journalists is to shoot some seagulls out of the sky because they’re stealing our chips’ said Cllr Malcolm Noonan, Green Party Environment Spokesperson.
 
Cllr Noonan said that we are facing total ecosystem collapse in coming decades due to climate change, habitat loss and exploitation of resources. He said that successive Irish Government’s have failed to grasp the importance of preventing biodiversity decline. ‘Our current Government has pursued a policy agenda that will further damage ecosystems in Ireland, continuing with a state funded badger cull that has no merit, allowing the ongoing cutting of turf on protected bogs, pursuing aquaculture and agriculture policies that will lead to further habitat and species loss, openly embracing  Genetically Modified crops  and failing to support organisations like the Heritage Council in their work towards education and awareness’ said Cllr Noonan.
 
‘Conservative estimates based on a 2010 study put the value of ecosystem services (the value of pollination, air and water filtration etc) to Ireland were put at €2.7bn. (http://www.irishenvironment.com/commentary/biodiversity-and-ecosystems-irelands-undervalued-economic-assets/ ) Perhaps when Senators and TDs jump on a populist bandwagon to call for a species to be culled they might just consider the economic value of our wildlife and natural habitats’ he said.

'The Green Party would like to see a more informed and balanced debate on the issue but more importantly we wish to see a strategic plan from the next Government on how we prevent biodiversity loss, fund State Organisations and Local Authorities towards conservation and as policymakers to value our native flora and fauna and its place in a world that is being consumed by our needs’ he concluded.

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