BBC Scotland News accused of complete lies about wildlife decline

Appalling! The report does not make the above statement anywhere. The report states quite clearly at the beginning:

It is not appropriate to compare indicator trends between countries as data from different taxonomic groups have been used.

Fergal has done just that. Mendacious or stupid or both?

Looking more deeply into the report we find that you can meaningfully compare the figures for some species but that these are favourable to Scotland:

  • Trends do vary across the UK countries and generally farmland birds are faring better in Scotland, where on average they have increased since the 1990s.
  • Our State of Nature metrics show declines in moths and butterflies across the UK, although trends in Scotland are, on average, stable.
  • Declines have been most notable in breeding waders of lowland wet grassland such as Lapwing and Snipe, due to habitat loss. Outside Scotland, a large proportion of these species’ populations are now confined to sites managed as nature reserves.
  • UK woodland cover increased by 9% between 1998 and 2018 and is currently estimated at 3.17 million ha. Scotland has seen the largest area increase (156,000ha)
  • Pressure on Scotland’s diverse landscapes has resulted in biodiversity losses and gains. There is evidence that some wildlife has fared better in Scotland over recent decades than in the UK as a whole.

4 thoughts on “BBC Scotland News accused of complete lies about wildlife decline

  1. Never let the truth get in the way of a bad story……. SNP bad by association. Scotland bad, Holyrood bad, to poor, too wee, too stupid, that’s BBC Scotland I’m talking about now!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Whilst Johnson and his uber britnats threaten Scotland’s environmental protections with their brexit madness the SNP Scottish Govt continue to tackle and reduce the emissions of pollutants into the atmosphere (acting local and thinking global – delivering REAL improvements to Scotland’s air quality). Latest data from Scotland’s Chief Statistician carried on – link and snippet below:

    Scotland’s Chief Statistician has announced the publication of a report on emissions of air pollutants in 2017.

    The main findings are:

    • since 1990 there have been reductions in emissions for all pollutants, with decreases of 15 per cent for ammonia, 63 per cent for PM10, 65 per cent for NMVOCs, 68 per cent for PM2.5, 71 per cent for nitrogen oxides, 84 per cent for carbon monoxide, 96 per cent for sulphur dioxide and 97 per cent for lead.


    1. Hi Ludo 🙂

      Those pollution reduction stats look really good, should we put the caveat maybe, *except in city centres where the traffic management systems bizarrely insist that ALL buses should congregate on the same street at the the same time to spew out excessive fumes while they keep themselves gridlocked?? Perhaps a simple even distribution of routes might help? Or give us trams!


  3. There was a woman on GMS this morning – radio Scotland had started the news item in the the same vein as the headline above – who seemed to be part of producing the report reported on,,, well, it was hours ago so I’ve forgotten the woman’s name, but anyway,,,

    She did in fact agree with how terrible Scotland’s faster wildlife diversity decline is (diversity should have been in the headline, the numbers aren’t necessarily different, it’s about diversity). So in a bizarre twist, I am going to suggest, for once, that the BBC is merely ignorant – and obviously relishing the bad press Scotland is getting – rather than lying. But I do always feel that lying is a close enough term to use.

    She rambled on about moths (declining) and butterflies (increasing) and global warming and land use.

    But this wildlife expert, as she got more and more into her subject in greater detail (obviously allowed to run with it, because it was bad and horrific, and she was fair hamming it up like), it turns out that for Scotland being such a tiny tiny wee country we have such a hugely disproportionate amount of diversity, so the decline only looks worse because there was so much to start with.

    I don’t mean any of that to take away from the seriousness of the issue – we do need to take habitats and sustainability of ecosystems into serious consideration, prioritising them, while we develop our country in the future. But still, Scotland is indeed the most fantastic country in the world.


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