• One has to have a very robust mental constitution not to despair, at least temporarily, at what the so called leaders of the EU have chosen to to agree upon. As you say Martin, Commissioner Ciolos must indeed be close to resignation with his envirnomentally beneficial proposals having been totally ignored.

    The actual overall reduction in the total budget is perhaps not surprising what is a travesty is that the percentage of the CAP covering Pillar 2, the environmentally friendly farming element, has been reduced the most and that it has the potential to be reduced even more by individual member states. This is all at a time when the environment and biodiversity is being decimated by ill considered farming and other industrial practices. The very worrying points are, that this myopic budget regime is now set to last the next 6/7 years, plus the fact that to really reverse biodiversity loss all the EU member states need to make a concerted effort to do this in a cooperative effort. The UK has little chance of reversing biodiversity loss on its own, even if it should choose to do so, (migrant birds for example), if other member states are pulling in the opposite direction.

    I do hope for the UK's sake that something can be salvaged from this wreckage however as noted above any salvaging actually needs to be applied across all member states to have any real long term biodiversity benefit.

    When one considers what self centered and short sighted decisions have just been taken by our so called "leaders" is it any wonder Europe is in the mess that it is.