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SSSI campaign in NI successful

A controversial amendment tabled during a debate on the Wildlife & Natural Environment Bill in the Northern Ireland Assembly has been dropped following intervention from rural groups including Countryside Alliance Ireland, Ulster Farmers Union, Bann Systems, the Ulster Clay Pigeon Shooters Association and the British Deer Society.

The campaign was in opposition to Amendment 23, which sought to give the NI Environment Agency the power to prohibit or restrict shooting on land urrounding or adjoining Areas of Special Scientific Interest. Tommy Mayne, of BASC Northern Ireland, said: ?We are delighted that this amendment has been dropped. BASC co-ordinated a joint response, which took the form of a document setting out our objections to the proposed amendment. The new powers were unnecessary, as sufficient legal protection already exists. The committee has come to the sensible conclusion that Amendment 23 should be dropped.?