Monday April 19, 2021
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Dutch support for stricter Climate Policy in EU Green Deal

On Wednesday (May 20), the European Commission will present the long-awaited Green Deal Climate Policy, along with a new vision for food safety and biodiversity.

The plans will be presented in Brussels by Vice-President Frans Timmermans and Commissioner Kyriakides, who is responsible for Health (food safety, medicines, etc.). The presentation of the plans has been postponed several times and there is still no agreement at European level on the financing of the major plans.

This postponement is partly due to the question of how much money should be released for the corona megafund and how the EU multi-year budget 2021-2027 should be adjusted accordingly. As a result, the 27 EU Commissioners and the EU governments still disagree on how drastic and how expensive the Green Deal should / should be.

It is not yet clear how large the new agricultural budget can be. From the German-French compromise on future EU funding concluded by Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron yesterday, it can be inferred that current Social and Economic Structural Funds, rural investment, agricultural subsidies and other EU cash flows will be "turned" into more targeted Green Deal payments. From previous comments by the Polish Commissioner for Agriculture Wojchiekowski, it can already be deduced that he wants to shift the EU subsidy funds from 'hectares and tonnage of the agro-industry' to the incomes of farming families.

The Farm to Fork (F2F) strategy is a spearhead of the current European Commission as part of the European Green Deal. EU Commissioner Kyriakides believes that agriculture should adapt to stricter climate and health rules, and that consumers should change consumer behavior. She says it is not possible to continue in the current way.

Although the policy expressly applies to European farmers and horticulturists, the role of European Commissioner for Agriculture Janusz Wojciechowski on the new policy is limited. He does contribute, but Commissioner Stella Kyriakides (Food Safety and Health) is leading the way. She is accountable to climate commissioner Frans Timmermans.

The draft version states that there will be European directives that determine how much the use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers must be reduced by 2030. According to unconfirmed reports, the goal would be to cut substance use by half by 2030.

An official note from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague shows that the Dutch government broadly supports the new European Climate Policy. The Netherlands agrees that stricter criteria will be introduced for CO2 air pollution and the reduction of pesticide use. The Dutch cabinet says it is committed to a gradual reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

The Netherlands further notes that the regulation proposed by the Commission has received a predominantly positive reception from the EU Member States. With broad support, the proposal appears to have a good chance of success. In addition, like the Netherlands, a number of Member States support the inclusion of a tightened 2030 greenhouse gas reduction target.

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