US News A citizens' assembly proposes to change the CAP into a common “environmental” agricultural policy

21:10  28 september  2020
21:10  28 september  2020 Source:   ouest-france.fr

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The National Commission for Public Debate (CNDP) organized a session on agriculture which resulted in a demand for a "new social contract" and a strong greening of European agricultural policy on Sunday 27 September.

Around a hundred French people drawn by lot agreed on a new social contract for agriculture this weekend in Paris, during a public debate on the future European policy on the subject.

Initially, 140 people were to participate in this first citizens' assembly for agriculture organized by the National Commission for Public Debate (CNDP). About fifteen citizens had to forfeit due to the epidemic or logistical constraints, others were unable to participate in the final vote on Sunday in order to reach their distant home: in the end, 112 took part in the vote on the final text, including 100 for, 9 against and 3 abstentions, indicates the CNDP on Monday.

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Their conclusions must be used to feed France's position in the negotiations of the common agricultural policy (CAP), for the period 2021-2027.

Ecological transition in the service of agriculture

They have defined six priority objectives, including that of ensuring an ecological transition to sustainable agriculture, respectful of the environment, biodiversity, animal welfare and contributing to the fight against climate change.

Ensuring fair remuneration and pensions for farmers and allowing a better distribution of wealth between all the actors, must also be a priority according to them, such as ensuring healthy and quality food, accessible at all at the local level.

They retain several levers to achieve this, such as making the environment inseparable from agriculture by renaming the CAP to CEAP (common environmental agricultural policy), setting up a label that guarantees the + good treatment + of the animal throughout throughout its life, or make aid conditional on environmental practices and services rendered to society rather than per hectare.

Ideas that should influence the future national strategic plan

The organization of this public debate, called ImPACtons !, stems from a legal obligation. The opinions gathered can feed into the national strategic plan (PSN) that France - the first beneficiary of European agricultural aid - must present to the European Commission as part of the negotiations for the future CAP.

In its PSN, recalls the CNDP, each Member State must define a diagnosis of its agricultural policy, its priorities and the way in which it intends to distribute CAP aid from now on.

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