Day: September 15, 2022

EU: See Here 15 Members of the European Parliament Call On the EU To Ban the Export of Live Farmed Animals to Third (non EU) Nations.

On the occasion of Ban Live Exports Awareness Day 2022, fifteen Members of the European Parliament joined together today in a video-action calling on the European Union to ban the export of live farmed animals to third countries.

Regards Mark

Mark (WAV), Ellie and Liza Protest against live animal exports.

UK: Will the once ‘green prince’ clash with his fracking-friendly government? – by Phoebe Weston.

Will the once ‘green prince’ clash with his fracking-friendly government?
by Phoebe Weston

I remember discovering as a child that then-Prince Charles spoke to his plants, and laughing about it with my mum. His courtiers also claimed he gives branches of trees a “friendly shake” to wish them well as he walks by. Even by today’s standards these practices still might seem pretty odd, but lots of Charles’s other “dotty” environmental views over the years have aged well.

Since his 20s, the new king has been banging on about plastic pollution and nature-based solutions. In 1970, he spoke about the “cancerous forms” of pollution – oil at sea, chemicals in rivers, air pollution from factories, cars and aeroplanes. Last year, the Washington Post said he could be the “21st century’s first eco-king”.

More recently, Charles revealed to the BBC he forgoes meat and fish for two days a week, and dairy for one day a week. His 50-year-old Aston Martin runs on surplus English white wine and cheese (no, really). Solar panels are now up on Clarence House, and he’s written a 336-page book in which he makes a “call to revolution”. He must be the first monarch to do so.

Charles has always genuinely taken the climate seriously which is much more than the rest of the royal family can profess to do – even if he does have an astronomical carbon footprint himself, living in mansions and travelling by private jet.

Until now he has shown no sign of slowing down. But now, as king, Charles is obliged to take an oath of silence. Will he continue to speak out on the environment from the throne? “Definitely not,” Jonathon Porritt, the environmentalist and Green politician, who also advised Charles as Prince of Wales, told my colleague Fiona Harvey.

But this green stuff is so ingrained in Charles, it could be hard for him to change the habit of a lifetime. With signs suggesting the UK government is moving in the wrong direction on climate change it might be difficult for him to not be active behind the scenes. He will meet with the prime minister once a week, and this is where King Charles III may have power to hold Liz Truss – or whoever else in the future – to account on the issues he cares about.

Of course, one of the Queen’s strengths was that we rarely knew what she believed in private, so the fact Charles has been so vocal about so many issues could be to his detriment. But equally, it also means the royal family could have an unlikely fanbase. Head cheerleader is my great-aunt Tina, who says she doesn’t really like the monarchy but messaged me this the other day: “King Charles will not like fracking or digging up more oil and gas in the north sea, or stopping the green levies, long live King Charles!!”.

It may seem a bit depressing that the best leadership on the environment is coming from an unelected monarch with questionable views about homeopathy and shaking hands with plants. Many of us are hoping that the green prince becomes a green king, but what a sad state of affairs that you have to rely on the monarchy to speak up for the destruction of the natural world.

Right now it feels like most of the government has a vow of silence on the environment. It would be great if those elected to be in power could speak up about these issues first. Especially when many obligations, such as cutting carbon emissions, are in fact enshrined in law – speaking about many of these issues shouldn’t be controversial.

Regards Mark


EU: EU fishery policy cannot continue to neglect fish welfare – opinion.

EU fishery policy cannot continue to neglect fish welfare

15 September 2022


Written by Douglas Waley

The Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) sets the right foundational objectives for the management of fisheries and fish populations in the EU’s waters. Yet, to date, it still ignores fish welfare.

In October 2012 the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) was published in the official journal of the EU, including the specific requirements that the formulation and implementation of Union fisheries policy, ‘since animals are sentient beings, pay full regard to the welfare requirements of animals’. More than a year later, in October 2013, the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) was published, and it failed entirely to take up the commitments made in the TFEU to pay regard to the welfare of animals.

The absence of high level objectives or recognition of animal welfare in the CFP has played out across the subsequent years as a lack of action and lack of awareness, especially for the welfare of fish and aquatic invertebrates. Technical measures, rules on fishing gears and methods, have been established with fish population management in mind, and without regard for the capture experience, exhaustion, suffocation, or injury faced by the animals. 

Labelling requirements have been designed to give the consumer information that enables them to make choices based on localised environmental impacts, but not the information that enables consumers to make choices based on animal welfare or global environmental impacts. The wild capture fishery industry in particular has passed these years without developing an awareness of its animal welfare impacts or consumer expectations, and without improving practices to reduce welfare impacts.

The European Commission is now developing a report on how the CFP has functioned to date, and on emerging trends of importance to fisheries and aquaculture. Eurogroup for Animals has published its position paper here. We are making the case that the CFP, with its existing objectives, needs to be fully and properly implemented before reforming the legislation itself. The failures of not incorporating animal welfare need to be acknowledged now and specific actions taken immediately where tools are available. In the future, fisheries policy should be an integrated part of a Common Food Policy and as part of a transition to sustainable food chains.

See here our detailed report on the causes of animal welfare issues in wild capture fisheries, and the steps necessary to make improvements for captured animals.

The European Commission has opened a public consultation on the functioning of the CFP. The consultation is available here and is open until 23 September at midnight CET.

Regards Mark