UPDATE – 16 November: In our latest correspondence with President Ursula von der Leyen, the Greens/EFA Group takes note of her intention to stick to the spirit of the original proposal of the former Commission. However, we urge the Commission to ensure the CAP at least Does No Harm and at best delivers positive change, ensuring that one third of the EU budget helps meet the EU Green Deal.
UPDATE 10 November: It has been two weeks since the EU Council and the EU Parliament adopted their positions on the future Common Agricultural Policy. Both positions were disappointing, effectively watering down the Commission’s original proposal and failing to implement the flagship Green Deal program, despite demands from farmers and civil society that the EU’s billions should be invested in farmers that work to protect the planet.
On Friday October 24, Bas Eickhout, together with more than 40 other Members of the European Parliament – supported by over 3000 citizens – sent a letter to Commission President Ursula von der Leyen asking her to withdraw the CAP proposal, since it no longer aligns with the Commission’s priorities on climate and biodiversity.
Last week (30 October), we received a reply by President Von der Leyen. In that letter, she writes that she understands our concerns, but that she nevertheless wants to keep the CAP on the negotiating table. She promised, however, that the Commission will be working to improve it during the negotiations with the Council and Parliament, starting today in Brussels.
The question is now whether or not the Commission will deliver on this promise, and crucially, whether the EU governments and the European Parliament negotiation team will follow her on that path.
Excerpt from Ursula von der Leyen’s letter:
“A good compromise would mean in my view that we agree on a new CAP that ensures food security and a fair income for farmers, but equally delivers for climate and biodiversity objectives in a far more effective and decisive manner than in the current period”– Ursula von der Leyen 30 October 2020
Download the full letter (30 October) here
“Although the Commission doesn’t want to withdraw the CAP, as we proposed, I’m content that Commission president Ursula von der Leyen agrees with us on the importance of the Green Deal to fight climate change and the loss of biodiversity. It is good to see that she stresses the need of the Farm to Fork and biodiversity strategy to be embedded in the new CAP.– Greens/EFA MEP Bas Eickhout 10 November 2020
She will find us as a progressive coalition on her side. We as Greens are looking forward to the Commission’s strategy to deliver on those targets as Council and Parliament will come together to discuss the CAP Reform in the coming weeks.”