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Management of large carnivore populations: Local government leaders call for more resources and more flexibility for Member States  

On 5 December, Jacques Blanc (FR/EPP), mayor of La Canourge and the European Committee of the Regions' rapporteur on pastoralism, spoke at a hearing on wolves held in Brussels by the European Parliament. He called for the Member States to have more resources and more flexibility to manage their populations of large carnivores.

Maintaining pastoralism is vital for farming across the EU, in order to keep rural areas alive. Unfortunately, the situation is worrying for pastoralism in many European countries where populations of large carnivores are growing. The losses caused by large predators are very significant and are rising.

The European Committee of the Regions is calling on the Commission to assess the need to revise the Habitat Directive on the basis of the next State of Nature in the EU Report in 2020. The CoR is also calling for the biodiversity strategy to be based on a new specific fund for species conservation. "The fund should cover compensation for damage caused by large carnivores, the cost of which is rising sharply and taking up an increasing proportion of EAFRD funds at a time when the budget is being significantly reduced", stressed Jacques Blanc. "In France, the National Institute for Agricultural Research estimates the annual cost of livestock protection and compensation at EUR 80 000 per wolf. In Spain, compensation costs have risen from EUR 40 000 in 2014 to EUR 300 000 in 2019. This exponential cost of predation is no longer tenable."

Contact:

Hélène Moraut

Tel. +32 22822161

helene.moraut @cor.europa.eu