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Nature Conservation: Expenditure

Volume 508: debated on Thursday 8 April 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much his Department spent on protecting (a) bats and (b) other protected species in the most recent year for which figures are available. (325829)

More than 300 species are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010, including all species of bats. These will benefit from a diverse range of funding streams and conservation effort involving the DEFRA network of organisations and with the exception of any species-specific projects, figures are not accounted for in this way. I refer to my previous answer of 22 Mar 2010, Official Report, column 138W, on overall biodiversity expenditure, which would include conservation of protected species.

With specific regard to bats, the UK is a party to the Agreement on the Conservation of European Bats (the Eurobats Agreement) which promotes their protection internationally and for which the UK subscription in 2010 was £59,890.68. In addition the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC) contributed £87,000 to the National Bat Monitoring Programme in 2009-10. Natural England estimates that it has spent approximately £370,000 on work intended to protect bats in 2009-10.