CAP preserving the environment and promoting sustainable agriculture | WWF

CAP preserving the environment and promoting sustainable agriculture

 rel=
Wheat field, Dorset, UK.
© Edward Parker / WWF

Since the beginning of the EU the Common Agricultural Policy has always had a massive influence on how the sector has evolved. Accounting for close to 40% of the overall budget and with rules that are unintelligible for most people, the EU’s agricultural policy has always been a source of controversy.

The last 50 years of agricultural intensification have been a disaster for the environment. In the rush to increase productivity through greater use of fertilisers, pesticides, reduction in fallow land and wild areas as well as a drive to mechanisation, we have seen new problems appear.  The European Commission itself acknowledges that food production accounts for 30% of all environmental problems. The challenges we are facing include:
 
  • pollution and over-abstraction of water
     
  • increased greenhouse gas emissions
     
  • decline of farmland biodiversity
     
  • soil erosion and depletion.
 
A radical change of the system is needed or else the face of the countryside will be irreversibly changed by big agro-businesses and we will no longer be able to sustainably produce food in the future. It is in the power of our politicians to make this change now.

CONTACTS

  • Sebastien Godinot

    Economist

    WWF European Policy Office,
    WWF EPO

    +32 2 740 09 20

  • Tycho Vandermaesen

    Senior Public Affairs Officer

    WWF European Policy Office,
    WWF EPO

    +32 2 743 88 08