In responding to the submissions to a consultation on proposals to help eradicate bovine TB in England, Defra has announced that it will not issue any further intensive badger culling licences after 2022.
“The government’s view is:
- New Badger Disease Control (intensive cull) licences will cease to be issued after 2022.
- New Badger Disease Control (intensive cull) licences issued in 2021 and 2022, could, after a minimum of two years of culling, be revoked after a progress evaluation by the CVO. In practice this evaluation could take place after two or three years of culling.
- The initial financial commitments for companies to apply for a Badger Disease Control licence will remain at four years’ worth of funding. However, the 25% contingency requirement will be removed.
- Supplementary Badger Culling will be limited to a maximum of two years and the issuing of SBC licences for previously licensed areas or areas licensed for Badger Disease Control after 2020 will be prohibited.”
The government will monitor badger populations in former culling areas, and will continue its ambition for England to be officially bTB free (OTF) by 2038 through non-lethal means.