520,000+ citizens, their mobilized Members of Parliament and Environmental Ministers, the European environmental NGO’s including our own extraordinary BirdLife partnership, businesses from different sectors, in particular the extractive industry, as well academics and think tanks.
A stirring win not only because of the immediate benefits for Nature, but, more broadly, because as we face the current anxieties of European unity and implicit challenges to her integrity and her democratic bona-fides, we see that when the people mobilize, our government does listen – and that we must not despair.
Of course, we do not stop here – tough work still lies ahead. We need to come forward with strong proposals for how the Commission can better implement and enforce the laws we fought so hard to save. Taking advantage of, and reinvigorated by, this stirring win, we will “attack” 2017 and the formidable challenges ahead, in the clear and certain knowledge that Civil Society CAN and DOES make a difference if we work together and include other sectors, other views, other legitimate interests.
Rainer Maria Rilke, in his Letters to a Young Poet, says:
“If you will stay close to nature, to its simplicity, to the small things hardly noticeable, those things can unexpectedly become great and immeasurable.”
We stayed close to nature and we got a great and immeasurable return. So I wish you all a 2017 close to nature and to enjoy the great things and emotions that it offers every day.