Gorse Hill Labour

Labour Councillors for Gorse Hill in Trafford, Greater Manchester

Floods – You don’t need a Weatherman…

When Cameron is this desparate, you know the Tories want to deflect the sunlight.

Cameron's yard-dogs have been blaming everyone during the floods. They've been smearing and leaking about the Environment Agency; they've been pointing the fingers at Councils, even Conservative run Councils; and they've been desparately dredging for reasons to blame anyone.

The Tories were right to be worried as there's a devastating piece in the Guardian today pinning the blame squarely at Cameron. The article explains:

  • Changing demand has led to increased Maize production for animal feed
  • The nature of Maize means that:

     

    • Farmers have been ploughing land that was previously untilled and switching from spring to winter sowing, leaving the soil bare during the rainy season. And thanks to a wholesale change in the way the land is cultivated, the water – instead of percolating into the ground – is now pouring off the field.
       
  • Labour saw it coming. In 2005 it warned, "increased run-off and sediment deposition can also increase flood hazard in rivers".
  • Labour turned this advice into conditions attached to farm subsidies. Ground cover crops should be sown under the maize and the land should be ploughed, then resown with winter cover plants within 10 days of harvesting, to prevent water from sheeting off.

So why isn't this happening in Somerset?

"Because the current government dropped the conditions. Sorry, not just dropped them. It issued – wait for it – a specific exemption for maize cultivation from all soil conservation measures."

 

"It's hard to get your head round this. The crop which causes most floods and does most damage to soils is the only one which is completely unregulated."

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Cameron and Paterson

 

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