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Constructive and flexible nature legislation required

Responding to the recent EU consultation on the Habitats and Birds Directives, Scottish Land & Estates has called for the implementation of these 2 main pillars of nature legislation in Europe to be more constructive and flexible.  In particular, rather than a model of strict protection, we are keen to see economic and social activity better integrated with environmental considerations.  Conversations about how landowners can effectively deliver for nature alongside delivering food, timber, housing and sustainable rural communities, need to occur and processes need to be put in place that allow those owning and managing land to make informed choice about what to deliver, where.

Scottish Land & Estates, in a joint letter with GWCT, BASC and the Scottish Moorland Group to Pia Bucella, Director of Natural Capital at the European Commission, has also pointed out that while the Directives are sufficiently broad to suggest there is considerable flexibility in terms of their implementation, in practice Member States tend to take a more prescriptive, risk averse approach to their implementation.  This is understandable give their wish to avoid possible proceedings through the European Court of Justice.  Europe therefore has an enabling role to play in giving Members States support to take a more constructive and flexible approach where this would benefit the overall objectives of the Directives.

Our full response to the EU Refit Questionnaire and the multi-organisation letter to Pia Bucella are available here...

 

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