LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

17/02/2017

Finding a solution to pollution – our published letter in the Sunday Times

WILDLIFE THREATENED BY POST-BREXIT ENVIRONMENTAL SUBSIDY CUTS

Simon Barnes is spot-on about post-Brexit agricultural payments and future environmental protection (Magazine, January 22)

I have great sympathy with farmers who are asked to produce abundant cheap food while at the same time protecting vulnerable wildlife and habitats.  We are particularly interested in the protection of rivers and water-dependent wildlife post-Brexit, an issue too often ignored.  Our research shows that sediment excess phosphate and pollution, much of it resulting from poor soil management have a devastating effect on many English and Welsh rivers to the detriment of wild fish, insects, birds and mammals.  There are solutions and we know that many farmers are willing to be part of them.  However, as Barnes states there must be financial incentives for them to continue to protect the environment and rewards for successful initiatives.  But whatever agri-environment subsidy system is adopted, it is vital that we put more resources into protecting our precious aquatic wildlife.  If not, there will be adverse effects on us all.

Paul Knight, CEO, Salmon & Trout Conservation UK