Letters - July 16, 2019

The total mass of insects is falling says our correspondent. Picture: Barry Crossley
The total mass of insects is falling says our correspondent. Picture: Barry Crossley
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Insects are essential - and in serious decline

Scientific reports starkly warn us we are on an unsustainable path.

The planet is at the start of the sixth mass extinction in its history.

For me, one of the most worrying aspects of this is the rate insect populations are collapsing.

Insects are essential for the proper functioning of all ecosystems: as food for other creatures, pollinators and recyclers of nutrients.

According to researchers, however, the total mass of insects is falling by a precipitous 2.5 per cent a year. Eminent scientists recognise that, if this decline is not halted, there could be catastrophic consequences for the survival of mankind.

An article in Biological Conservation journal states intensive agriculture, including the heavy use of pesticides, is the main cause, but with climate change also a significant factor.

A clear example of the impact is on farmed land in England, between 2000 and 2009, the number of widespread insects and moths fell by 58 per cent.

Although these statistics make gloomy reading, the road to a solution is still open, just.

It is critical that everyone plays their part - individuals, local authorities, governments, and companies.

As individuals, it is easy to feel our efforts are futile. Although they will be just drops in the ocean, enough drops can turn the tide away from the looming catastrophe.

So, the answer to the question “what can we do to help?” can be found in our daily decisions – like driving and flying less and switching to a ‘green’ energy provider.

We could eat more meat-free meals, be vigilant about not wasting food, unplug computers and other electronic equipment when not in use.

But is that enough to make a significant change?

Probably not.

So spread the word about climate change by talking to friends and family about it.

There are also many organisations locally you could get involved in, from wildlife/ecological groups to pressure groups.

Dr Sheila Evans

via email

Politics

Courage and dexterity needed

Boris Johnson or whoever attempts to negotiate Brexit will find the same intransigence that has defied his predecessors.

We have been truly stitched-up – and as professionally and as comprehensively as a Savile Row suit.

There is no benefit in Brussels budging from their current position, they almost luxuriate in this very pleasant comfort zone that keeps intact the federalising ambition of the founding fathers.

We are like little boys locked in detention.

It’s almost on a par with moving the entire Great Wall of China two miles south in gaining any decent concession.

Shamefully, it was a succession of past premiers who were responsible for entrapping us in the organisation.

Maastricht 1992, Amsterdam 1997, Nice 2001 and Lisbon 2007 were treaties that sealed us deeper and deeper into the Brussels’ political catacombs.

Most of the PMs, especially Tony Blair, flattered by the rarefied air of Brussels’ upper circles and fearful of being the odd man out in such exalted company, surrendered our democratic heritage in those ever more constrictive treaties.

And now the only chance of escape from this manipulative, self-serving, Byzantine institution is to resolutely press for a no-deal conclusion.

But clearly it will take a very courageous, dexterous and economically capable politician to achieve this end in a way to minimise inevitable collateral damage.

We have, therefore, to live in hope that Boris Johnson can disprove the liberal establishment’s sceptical, scoffing conception of his ability and character and deliver the near impossible.

Gordon Lawrence

Address supplied

Brexit

Labour’s double standards abhorrent

Jeremy Corbyn has betrayed the 3.9 million Labour Brexit voters with the announcement Labour will be supporting a second referendum, and taking a Remain stance on Brexit in the event of a Conservative or no-deal Brexit.

Labour’s double standards are abhorrent! The party has said it will pursue Brexit “if it is in power, but will seek to reverse Brexit whilst in opposition.” Labour is willing to change its opinion based on whether they are in Government or not. Either way, clearly the party does not respect its voters, its membership or the British people.

By finally coming out and supporting Remain, the far Left is now willing to sacrifice the last shred of confidence the public has in its political class. At a time when the people’s confidence in the House of Commons is at an all-time low, Labour has really done its best to guarantee the worst fears of the British people – by ignoring the people’s views, rather than representing their voices in Parliament.

Jayne K Adye

Director

Get Britain Out