And you thought US environmental policies were bad.
January 24, 2001 8:35 PM   Subscribe

And you thought US environmental policies were bad. Europe is facing a major environmental crisis that it seems unwilling or unable to act on -- deforestation, flooding, desertification and more. From the article: "One fifth of the land in Spain is already so degraded that it is turning to desert" -- and it's as bad if not worse elsewhere on the continent & in Britain.
posted by croutonsupafreak (2 comments total)
Well, it's not great, but some efforts are being made - I understand that tree cover in Britain has increased by 10% in the last twenty years or so (can't find the link, but I read it in the Indepedent on Sunday a month or so ago). It's true that the type of tree cover is often conifer plantations rather than deciduous and mixed woodland, but still...

I think it would be impossible to return British, and probably most European, countryside to its 'natural state' as some of the most diverse environments arose from the intervention of man - heaths, moors, pasture, downlands, managed forests and coppices. Most of the tree cover in Britain was lost long ago - forests cut down for shipping and only maintained on estates or in pockets such as the New Forest. What is important is that the countryside is managed as responsibly as possible, and hopefully some efforts are now being made in that direction, pace John Prescott and his like.
posted by Caffa at 3:10 AM on January 25, 2001

If Europe's environmental policies are bad, US policies are much, much worse -- and it's US emissions that will have the greatest impact on desertification in Europe.
posted by Romios at 4:47 PM on January 26, 2001

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