EP calls for strong second pillar as part of bigger ask for the overall continuation of agricultural subsidies regardless of their environmental delivery.
Wednesday 23 June, the EP voted the Dess report on ‘The CAP towards 2020; Meeting the food, natural resources and territorial challenges of the future’. In general, the report shows deep contradictions between some of its overall principles and the proposed measures which are supposed to reach these principles. For example, on the one hand the report repeats several commitments and identifies challenges such as: climate change, biodiversity, policy coherence for development, animal welfare, health, water, etc. But on the other hand, the report fails to bring out any concrete proposals which can really attain these commitments and challenges.
The report does not do enough to make the public money for public goods claim reality. Especially, the report’s proposal on greening the first Pillar is not sufficiently clear and hence will not deliver the environmental improvements we need. On top of that, there is not only a call to continue some, but even to create more harmful subsidies. An ask which the EU just cannot afford. The Parliament did take its responsibility in voting through an amendment on a strong second pillar which seems a reaction against the rumours on cutting back (part of) Pillar II. This can be seen as encouraging in a time in which the part of the CAP which delivers most for the environment and for Europe is severely under threat. For more information: 1. Open letter to civil society 2. Media release on pillar 2 3. Agri-factsheets 2011