Thursday, 18 June 2009

Network Rail and Environmental Destruction

You may remember the article that I posted on here, on 15/05/09, entitled 'Why is Springtime the Killing Time Around Here?' Well, the continuing destruction of wildlife by contractors, employed by big organisations, has now reached the national press. Network Rail has been removing trees from their embankments all over the country. Locally, this has happened at Heaton Chapel in Stockport, where, based on a BBC local TV report, I believe that the contractors added to the distress of local residents by working through the night by the light of floodlights!

The full story is in the following article in the online version of the Daily Telegraph:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/road-and-rail-transport/5468283/ Network-Rail-cuts-down-trees-to-prevent-leaves-on-the-line.html

(you'll probably have to cut and paste this link into your browser).

Note, that no-one is disputing the 'right' of Network Rail to remove trees - it's the unthinking brutality of the action that is criticised - and the fact that it has been done at the wrong time of year. As usual Network Rail claim all sorts of 'green credentials' but if they were really as green as they claim they would have a proper management plan for their embankments, which would mean that trees were only cut in the winter on some sort of rotation basis; such 'linear coppices' would actually be beneficial to wildlife.

I am convinced that one of the reasons why we are losing so much biodiversity in this country is because of the actions of such 'licensed eco-vandals' as Network Rail and their contractors. It's time that they started re-thinking their operations so as to enhance biodiversity rather than just mindlessly destroying it. It wouldn't take much - and probably would cost very little. All it would take would be some elementary environmental knowledge, a respect for the natural world and the requisite will.

Dave Bishop, June 2009

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