Agriculture  |  Publications  |  21.05.2012

EGP Policy Paper: The agricultural dimension of the GND

After a year-long working group process, the European Green Party adopted a policy paper during its Spring Council in Copenhagen setting down the agricultural dimension of the Green New Deal.

Text adapted from the policy paper

Agriculture is at the crossroads of the challenges which the Green New Deal aims to tackle and at the heart of the ecological transformation our societies need to undergo. By its nature, agriculture is the activity par excellence at the service of the people and the planet, as it meets one of humankind’s most basic needs, i.e. food, and manages a significant share of our planet's natural resources. 

Therefore the biggest challenge ahead for farmers in Europe and beyond is to provide sufficient and safe food in an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable manner. Future agriculture will also have to play a pivotal role in sustainably managing the world’s biomass stocks while providing us with a way out of our fossil-based economy. To take up these challenges, we will have to reverse the currently dominant trend of industrialisation and intensification that has driven too many farmers out of business while causing unprecedented environmental degradation. This is the reason why the European Greens are pushing in this policy paper for a paradigm shift in the agricultural sector: towards sustainable agriculture as the rule.

This paper starts by (1) outlining some key principles of the Green agricultural model, before (2) detailing green regulation proposals for agricultural markets, (3) defining the understanding of sustainability, (4) calling for a revival of rural areas in Europe, (5) outlining the holistic nature of the Green model, going beyond food production and finally (6) presenting the critique of the European Greens towards the current CAP reform proposals, as well as their alternatives.

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