Some have recently suggested that UKIP has a coherent environmental policy. Well, a few UKIP supporters have, anyway. I’ve written previously about the bizarre views of UKIP’s environment spokesperson Andrew Charalambous aka Dr Earth.
And then there’s UKIP’s MEP and agriculture spokesman Stuart Agnew, who notoriously expressed alarm that climate change action would suck so much Carbon Dioxide from the atmosphere that plants would not grow.
Yesterday the European Parliament considered a report into the implementation of the EU Biodiversity Strategy, and in particular the European Commission’s review of the Nature Directives, the Birds and Habitats Directives. The Parliament overwhelmingly voted in favour of the report, which highlighted the need for Europe to do much more to protect its biodiversity, and to strengthen the implementation of the Nature Directives.
The vote was 592 MEPs in favour of the findings of the report, with 54 against; and 45 abstentions.
I was interested to see who were the 54 who voted against; 18 of the 54 were from the UK. They were:
the ECR group: James Nicholson – Ulster Unionist
the ENF group: Janice Atkinson former UKIP, who has now joined forces with neofascists, the French national front.
the EFDD group: Stuart Agnew UKIP, Tim Aker UKIP, Jonathan Arnott UKIP, Gerard Batten UKIP, David Coburn UKIP, Bill Etheridge UKIP, Nigel Farage UKIP, Ray Finch UKIP, Nathan Gill UKIP, Roger Helmer UKIP, Mike Hookem UKIP, Diane James UKIP, Paul Nuttall UKIP, Patrick O’Flynn, Margot Parker UKIP, Jill Seymour UKIP.
Interestingly three MEPs from UKIP, William Earl of Dartmouth, Julia Reid and Jim Carver, abstained.
So a third of those who voted against doing more for nature across Europe, were from the UK and almost all of these were from UKIP.
This shows very clearly how much UKIP cares about nature.
If you care about nature and have a UKIP MEP in your area, why not let them know what you think about their attitude towards nature.
As it happens James Carver is one of my MEPs. I contacted them all about the vote and this was his reply:
Dear Mrs Birks,
Thank you for your email. We in UKIP believe in the importance of preserving nature reserves and natural habitats for wildlife in Britain and in Europe.
However, we believe that this task should be a national, not a European, responsibility and we will therefore oppose new EU legislation in this area. Nevertheless, we will support all amendments aimed at improving the existing legislation on this issue.
UKIP strongly believes that the best people to decide on natural habitats in Britain are the British people. We do not trust the unelected EU Commission to decide on the protection of the environment and animal welfare. The EU has caused irreparable damage with its environmental policy. It has destroyed our fish stocks and caused widespread deforestation with its policy on bio-fuels.
Thank you again for writing to us and we shall certainly keep in mind your opinion on this legislative proposal.
Perhaps he did keep in mind my opinion and that is why he abstained?
thanks Wendy. My friend Adrian Colston had exactly the same reply back from his MEP Dr Linda Reid.
As both Reid and Carver abstained from the vote, perhaps, as you say, you helped sway his opinion.
Just checked, Bill Etheridge and Jill Seymour are also my UKIP MEPs. Never got an answer from them. The other MEPs who did answer in a positive way and said they would vote to keep the current legislation were Anthea McIntyre (Con), Neena Gill (Lab) Sion Simon (Lab) Daniel Dalton (Cons).
I ‘spoke’ about environmental issues (albeit via email) with Stuart Agnew (farmer Stuart I may add) prior to the 2015 election as well as engaging with a foot canvasser. SA more or less told me after several exchanges to ‘go look at the UKIP manifesto’ if I wanted to know more about their stance on nature/environment etc…as they were very busy campaigning…..says it all really. Also don’t forget the pictures of their esteemed leader attending his local hunt on Boxing Day 2015…that to me sums up their overall attitude.
Thanks Craig – especially so for engaging with UKIP on environmental issues. Farage is no different from Cameron in being an avid hunt supporter. Once Cameron has left office, expect to see photos of him riding to the hounds.
Miles I’ve tried to engage to the best of my ability, Agnew was pretty much useless and a dead end and to be fair got pretty narked when I kept pressing him. Revenge was sweet (so to speak) as he popped a UKIP leaflet through my door, luckily I was home and was able to hand it straight back, stating they stood for nothing I believed in. Unfortunately Liz Truss has blocked me on twitter, correspondence on my part was in the first instance polite, however the straw that broke the camels back was when I called her f-ing clueless over her handling of and false information relating to the badger cull, as well as her (and Letwins) eagerness to push for a relaxation on the hunting act. I appreciate swearing is not big and/or clever, however much like Agnew/Farage these numpties push you to the limit.
thanks Craig. As you’ll have seen from today’s blog, Richard AE North missed the opportunity to put his ahem “eccentric” views on flooding in front of a Parliamentary Select Committee, because of offensive language he had used online.
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