25,000 people sign hedgecutting petition saying ‘no to more slash and burn’ ahead of vote
Environmental coalition urges Senators to reject proposed changes today in Heritage Bill
Opposition to a proposal to changes in hedgecutting dates, due to be voted on in the Seanad today, includes a petition of over 25,000 signatures.
The Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural, and Gaeltacht Affairs Heather Humphreys is looking for Oireachtas approval to allow hedgecutting in August and burning in the uplands in March.
However, environmentalists say these are times when birds are attempting to nest, lay eggs and raise their young.
An Taisce, Birdwatch Ireland, the Hedge Laying Association of Ireland and the Irish Wildlife Trust have joined forces to stop these changes that are listed in Section 8 of the proposed Heritage Bill 2016.
The environmental coalition is calling on Senators and the Minister to collect the necessary scientific data needed to inform any proposed changes before those changes are made.
A petition set up by the environmental NGOs on Uplift has been signed by more than 25,000 people and hundreds have emailed senators to say ‘no’ to the proposed changes.
The environmental coalition challenges the decision by the Minister to make these changes on the grounds of the serious impact they will have on a range of wildlife species and habitats in Ireland - this includes highly-threatened nesting birds.