BBC covfefe

“Conservative MSP Jamie Greene says there is a hung parliament and there is a ‘duty and an onus for all members of parliament, particularly new members of parliament, to make Brexit work. … That’s why I’m pleased there are 13 Scottish Conservative MSPs going down there.’
Mr Greene says Ruth Davidson accepts the result of the Brexit infeernedmum” http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-40193839?ns_mchannel=social&ns_source=twitter&ns_campaign=bbc_live&ns_linkname=593a4ce0e4b0831b67030422%26%27I%27m%20pleased%20there%20are%2013%20Scottish%20Conservative%20MSPs%27%26&ns_fee=0#post_593a4ce0e4b0831b67030422

Win:win: Conservative MSPs going to Westminster is good news for Scotland, and ‘infeernedmum’ is a good description of Brexit thus far.

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Climate clinch

“All of the UK is on track to see rises in high winds except the south and south-west, with the greatest impact across the Midlands, Yorkshire and Northern Ireland.” https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/may/15/uk-faces-sharp-rise-destructive-wind-storms-global-warming

Westminster’s climate reckless policies are vindicated.

Broxic

“Successive UK governments exploited whatever loophole they could find [in the EU’s 1976 Bathing Water Directive], and continued to pump untreated sewage into our ocean until 1998, longer than any other European country.
With much of the Brexit camp promising victory parties lit by bonfires of so called ‘red tape’…” (http://www.theecologist.org/blogs_and_comments/commentators/2986960/outside_the_eu_the_uk_could_again_be_the_dirty_man_of_europe.html)

…one can only hope the burning tape releases noxious gas.

Natural Selection

Natural England, a non-departmental government body sponsored by DEFRA, is recruiting for 29 professional posts (https://www.civilservicejobs.service.gov.uk/csr/jobs.cgi?jcode=1472685%20 and https://www.civilservicejobs.service.gov.uk/csr/jobs.cgi?jcode=1472667%20). Twenty-nine. At £24,120pa each, that costs £700,000 even without employer’s pension contributions. Where’s that money coming from during the current sustained attack on environmental public spending, including severe cuts to DEFRA?

Interestingly, these roles are in “Sustainable development” – that delightful oxymoron – as Planning or Wildlife Management Lead Advisers. Could these be aimed at combatting wildlife crime and protecting our wildlife?

Perhaps the role specifications may offer clues:
“Support the delivery of the Wildlife Incident Investigation Scheme (WIIS)”
“Working with a range of partners, customers and colleagues to implement changes in the delivery of land use work.”
“Building partnerships with customers (primarily LPAs [Local Planning Authorities]) and stakeholders to resolve complex and often contentious planning issues and to develop collaborative strategic land use approaches to conserving and enhancing the natural environment.”
Curiously open to interpretation. “Changes.” “Enhancing.”

More curiously,
“Spotting opportunities for income generation through our Discretionary Advice Service including preparing Customer Contracts and delivering the service specified.”
“Spot opportunities around income generation, draw up contracts and work with customers on Pre Application advice.”

Perhaps government is expecting these roles to pay for themselves through licensing land owners to indulge their delusions of military control over nature. Perhaps I’m over-sensitive since our equivalent, Scottish Natural Heritage, is on its own crusade to monetise nature. Ah, time for my anti-cynicism medication.

Water Protection Zeroes

“Investigations by WWF-UK, the Angling Trust and Fish Legal have revealed that, in January 2011, Defra Ministers and the Environment Agency decided to put the brakes on the use of WPZs [Water Protection Zones], except as a ‘last resort’. This was despite overwhelming evidence that other measures to tackle the pollution problem would not be sufficient. … It also flies in the face of Defra’s own analysis which has repeatedly shown that relying on voluntary action by farmers alone will not solve the problem of agricultural pollution.” (http://www.wwf.org.uk/about_wwf/press_centre/index.cfm?uNewsID=7722)

The High Court is expected to award habitat damages to the plaintiffs and 100 lashes by angling flies in the face to Defra.

Ecoliteracy

“The UK has been running up a massive environmental deficit over recent decades and which future generations will have to pay off. These cuts are a false economy and will undermine and jeopardise the future growth and development of the economy. … We are now faced with the extremely worrying prospect that Government no longer has the ecological literacy or functionality that society needs if we are to build a genuinely sustainable future.” (http://www.rspb.org.uk/media/releases/409659-rspb-and-the-wildlife-trusts-criticise-decision-to-cut-funding-for-environment-by-up-to-40)

UK government seems to have succumbed to the loan shark mentality: combine all your debts into one easy, overwhelmingly impossible repayment.

Legisploitation

“The Law Commission’s report and draft bill on the UK’s wildlife legislation … is flawed, because priority is given to wildlife exploitation – not protection. … The right to exploit animals for profit or leisure – that is, activities like game shooting – is considered inviolable.” (http://www.league.org.uk/news-and-opinion/news-stories/2015/nov/response-to-law-commission-wildlife-legislation-report)

Could there be an intersection in the Venn diagram of lawyers and game shooters?