WATCH: "We Want Our Country Back"

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How environmental crime became an EU security priority for 2018-21

In May 2017, EU justice ministers decided that environmental crimes – including wildlife trafficking and waste crimes – would be one of the EU’s ten priorities for the fight against serious and organised crime during the 2018-21 policy cycle. Catherine Bearder evokes how this decision came to being.

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David Davis calls for Catherine Bearder MEP to be sacked!

The Tories have now resorted to instructing opposition politicians on how to vote! Read this extraordinary letter Vince got from David Davis and watch Catherine Bearder MEPs response.

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MEP welcomes the Government's Ban on Ivory Trade

Today the Environment Secretary, Michael Gove announced that the sale and export of almost all ivory items would be banned in the UK under plans to be set out.

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MEP comments on Prime Minister's Florence Speech

"Why the Prime Minister's speech took place in Florence is still a mystery. The waffle fell far short of those served in Belgium.

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Wildlife conservationist killed in Tanzania

Last Wednesday, Wayne Lotter the head of an animal conservation NGO, was shot dead by an unknown gunman in Dar es Salaam whilst being driven from the airport to his hotel.

Mr Lotter was the director and co-founder of the PAMS foundation and had received numerous death threats as a result of his fight against poaching and ivory trafficking networks. He was a prominent figure in the global wildlife conservation community and was largely credited with reducing the poaching rates in Tanzania.

Catherine Bearder, Liberal Democrat MEP for the South East, said:

"The death of Wayne Lotter is an utter tragedy. Our thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues during this difficult time.

"Wayne devoted his life to combatting illegal wildlife trafficking and I know those of us fortunate to have worked with him are greatly saddened by his death.

"Wayne was a real champion for elephants. He understood the key role they play in the environment, in the vital tourist industry and he was most passionate in his work supporting the local communities who live with elephants.

"We must carry on fighting wildlife trafficking in continuing Wayne’s legacy."

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Electric Mini is a huge relief for Oxford and the UK economy - Catherine Bearder MEP

BMW announced today its plan to build the new electric Mini in its plant in Cowley, Oxford.

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Repeal Bill will allow Government to erode legislation ‘by the back door’ says MEP

Today the Government has published its Repeal Bill.

The Repeal Bill seeks to enact all EU treaties and laws into domestic law.

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UK Butterfly population witnessing chronic decline

The UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has released statistics showing that the specialist butterfly population has fallen by 74% since 1976.

This statistic is part of the long-term and ongoing decline in butterfly populations across the United Kingdom with destruction and deterioration of habitats being cited by many as the prime cause.

Butterflies are increasingly being utilised as environmental indicators because of their rapid and sensitive responses to subtle habitat or climatic changes.

The EU’s Habitats Directive promotes the conservation of natural habitats and establishes the EU wide Natura 2000 ecological network of protected areas which are safeguarded against potentially damaging developments.

Catherine Bearder, Liberal Democrat MEP for the South East said:

“This horrific statistic is just about the larger flying insects we notice. What may be happening to others that may be as important to our ecosystem is also extremely worrying.

“We have to keep working with our EU partners to defend our shared natural environment.

“MEPs will not sign off the Brexit deal if it weakens UK environmental protection.”

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Today is the day roaming charges across the EU end!

From today EU citizens traveling across the continent can use their mobile data without being hit by surprise charges.

The scheme, called “roam like at home”, let's Brits travelling abroad to the EU pay the same as they do in the UK when using mobile data.

However, if the UK continues down the track of a Hard Brexit and leaves the Single Market without a deal Britons will cease to benefit from this scheme.

The Liberal Democrats have called for the UK to keep this scheme as part of the Single Market once the UK leaves the EU.

Catherine Bearder, Liberal Democrat MEP for the South East, said:

“The end to rip-off roaming charges is a fantastic European victory for consumers across the EU.

“‘This will make life simpler and cheaper for Brits going on holiday in Europe this summer.

“This is just one of the many benefits of UK membership of the EU and the single market.

"A Hard Brexit will throw many of these benefits out of the window, making travelling abroad once again more expensive and complicated.”

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Celebrate 30 years of Erasmus + by saving it!

Today marks the 30th anniversary of the European Erasmus + programme.

It marks three decades of supporting not just students in higher education, but schools, adult education, youth programmes, and vocational education and training.

There is much to be celebrated, and there are many stories of changed lives and adventures made while learning. Over 86,000 young people from the UK took part between 2014-2015 alone. But as with any of the European programmes we are currently involved in, our future participation now hangs in the balance.

We have heard some assurances from Mrs May that the UK government will seek to continue to participate in Erasmus + after Brexit, but her threats of a ‘no deal’ mean nothing is guaranteed.

If last week’s election has demonstrated anything, it is that the young people of the UK are no longer going to allow others to dictate their future.

So today I call on you to not only celebrate this brilliant programme, but to stand up for it too by writing to Mrs May with your Erasmus story - let’s show her Erasmus is still important to us all.

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