Delivering Environmental Benefits through Ecological Focus Areas

On Tuesday 6 March stakeholders involved in the CAP reform debate, researchers, representatives from the Commission, European Parliament, Member States, NGOs and farmer organisations, came together to engage in a constructive debate on how to get the most for the environment out of the Ecological Focus Area (EFA) measure under the CAP proposals for the greening of direct payments. The event, held in Brussels, was hosted by Scottish Natural Heritage on behalf of the UK statutory conservation, countryside and environment agencies and organised by IEEP.

The European Commission (Pierre Bascou) provided an overview of the proposals, their objectives and intended impacts. This was followed by evidence on the potential environmental benefits from EFAs presented by Allan Buckwell (IEEP), Rainer Opermann (IFAB), Jaroslav Prazan (UZEI) and Henk van Zeijts (PBL). After lunch representatives from Birdlife (Trees Robijns), COPA-COGECA (Pekka Pesonnen), the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture (Ignacio Atance Muniz) and the European Parliament (George Lyon) gave their perspectives on the evidence, stimulating further debate and discussion.

Many of the ideas raised at the workshop will be incorporated into the final version of a report which is being produced by IEEP on behalf of the UK Land Use Policy Group. The report seeks to set out the evidence and choices surrounding the EFA proposals and how they can best deliver environmental benefits across the EU. This report will be finalised in the coming weeks and be available on both the CAP2020 and LUPG websites.

To find out more about the workshop the agenda, and presentations can be found here:

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09 Mar 2012