Joint NGO Response to Invasive Alien Species Proposal
Posted on 17/10/2013
Invasive alien species regulation is welcome, but to be effective the Commission’s proposals must be strengthened by removing the 50 species cap, and developing a system that effectively tackles the impacts of invasive species through coordinated, humane, preventative action across the EU.
The European Environment Bureau (EEB), BirdLife Europe, Eurogroup for Animals and Humane Society International (HSI) welcome the draft proposal by the European Commission as a start in tackling the challenging problem of invasive alien species (IAS).
IAS have severe and growing impacts on Europe’s wildlife, as well as costing the EU at least €12bn every year. EU level action is essential, as no single Member State can tackle this issue on their own. Effective action will not only help reduce the costs involved, but will also deliver environmental benefits across the Union, such as maintaining ecosystems’ complexity and resilience to other impacts, including climate change.
However, some aspects of the proposal, in particular the cap of 50 species on the list of IAS of Union concern, and the 5-year block on amending this cap, will seriously hamper the effectiveness of a system designed to prevent, minimise and/or mitigate the impacts of invasive alien species. If the proposals were adopted unchanged, it is unlikely that Target 5 of the EU Biodiversity Strategy, and Aichi Target 9 adopted under the Convention on Biological Diversity would be achieved.