It was my Honour to Give the Annual Lacey Lecture for the North Wales Wildlife Trust this year - You can watch it here:
In Honour of W.S. (Bill) Lacey, Lecturer in the Botany , University College of North Wales & Founder of the North Wales Wildlife Trust
A history of Beaver in Britain, a lecture by Peter Smith, Director of the Wildwood Trust. Peter will talk about the history of beaver extinction, the many efforts of people over the last 100 years who tried to reintroduce beavers and the problems they faced. The many benefits to our water quality, flood risks & and wildlife that beaver could bring. Dispelling some of the myths about the augments against beaver reintroduction.
The study of ecology has resulted in a growing interest in Rewilding some of our land and the role of animals such as beavers, wild herbivores and the huge ecological benefits of the population dynamics of plants, herbivores and predators, without the intervention of humans. The rewilding movement has spun off to take a proper look at land use economics, hydrology and the wider science of Ecological services. The economics of nature and the fundamental flaws in our current economic system are at the heart of all human wildlife conflict and Peter has spent his career learning about the ecological and economic tools that can mitigate such conflict and allow humanity and nature to flourish.
Beavers make a big difference to our rivers and this means there are winners and losers. There are many obvious and subtle benefits to beavers living in our water ways once again: wildlife, water quality, the buffering of floods & droughts and carbon sequestration are the most obvious. But how can we measure these benefits, what are the leading scientists and economists thinking when it comes to putting monetary value on these benefits and how we can all benefit and properly compensate or mitigate those that loose out.
A proper compensation strategy, based on understanding land values & taxation, could be the Solution to the whole problem of protecting nature and stimulating human progress, by getting to the very economic roots of the problem– we can see how simple economic steps, such as Land Value Tax & Green taxes, can efficiently and effectively internalise the costs and benefits of Wales’s Ecological Renaissance, allowing all to benefit by following the forgotten advice of Wales’s greatest minds including, Robert Owen, Aneurin Bevan, Bertrand Russell & even David Lloyd George!