Flying danger

Published: Wednesday 31 October 2001

-- some of the world's most endangered bird species are threatened by the European Union's (eu) plans to build massive transport links in new member countries, warn conservationists. Birdlife International, a global coalition of wildlife groups, is launching a campaign to push for an environmental review of the transport corridors that are to be built as part of eu 's pre-enlargement programme, known as tina (Transport Infrastructure Needs Assessment). According to a study by Birdlife, the routes will hit one in five of the sites that are due to become protected areas under eu laws. The plans would threaten habitats like Romania's Danube Delta and Poland's Biebzra Marshes. These sites are home to some of the most threatened species including the dalmatian pelican, red-breasted goose and aquatic warbler. The organisation wants the European Commission to cut off funding for the implementation of the plans. "It would be criminal and contrary to eu legislation for a scheme partly paid for by eu taxpayers to destroy an important part of Europe's rich natural heritage," said Zoltan Waliczky of the uk 's Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. n

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