environmental NGOs dismayed by the “pause” of the pesticide discount plan | EUROtoday

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If the federal government has happy the bulk agricultural unions by agreeing to “pause” the Ecophyto pesticide discount plan, it should now need to take care of the revolt of environmental protection associations.

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Sharply criticized for the “pause” introduced on the pesticide discount plan, the federal government defends the concept of ​​”getting away from punitive ecology”, however its opponents denounce a break with the “ecological five-year term” promised by Emmanuel Macron.

After two weeks of agricultural rise up, the manager put an finish to the motion at the price of quite a few concessions. Particularly on the 4e Ecophyto plan which set a goal of fifty% discount in using pesticides by 2030 (in comparison with 2015-2017) and which the federal government selected Thursday to “pause”.

A “shutdown” justified by the Prime Minister, Gabriel Attal, “time to put in place a new indicator” to measure using pesticides in fields and orchards.

Elected environmentalists instantly denounced an “unacceptable” and “dramatic” setback, whereas environmental NGOs expressed concern a couple of “retrograde” resolution when the safety of biodiversity and the well being of farmers are at stake.

“Agriculture of the previous century kept ever more dangerous products”

“We will reject any participation in a new Ecophyto dynamic whose indicator would be biased,” Générations Futures instantly responded.

“The Nodu [indicateur de suivi du plan national de réduction des produits phytopharmaceutiques] allowed us to see that France has not fulfilled its objectives for almost 15 years: 15 years of failure to pause, that raises questions”, can be stunned Thomas Uthayakumar, from the Foundation for Nature and Man, from AFP.

“What Gabriel Attal is proposing to us today completely contradicts the national strategies” of decarbonization (SNBC), meals (SNANC) or agricultural planning (PLOA), he regrets.

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This official, nonetheless, welcomes the federal government's willpower to oppose the EU-Mercosur free commerce settlement (Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay), to acquire reciprocity of requirements and to implement the Egalim legislation, to guard the farmers' remuneration.

“Today the FNSEA has won, but it will not bring anything to agricultural income, not a cent” and “it will allow us to continue the agriculture of the previous century by keeping ever more dangerous products on the market and by delaying their withdrawal in a cynical manner,” added the spokesperson for Générations Futures, François Veillerette, to AFP.

“Justice decision”

“This is a major political error because if the question of agricultural income is a real question for a certain number of farmers, it is not by sacrificing the environment and natural resources that we will resolve this problem , quite the contrary,” he continued.

This “pause” is introduced whereas the State has till June 30, 2024 to higher respect its trajectories of lowering using pesticides and defend waters, by order of administrative justice.

“This announcement is therefore also a refusal to comply with a court decision,” criticized the NGO Pollinis, one of many 5 associations behind this authorized process, “Justice for the Living”, to AFP.

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Over the previous 30 years, populations of discipline birds have fallen by 30% in France, in keeping with research which point out that the intensification of agriculture is the primary explanation for this decline.

For the WWF too, this pause is “a disastrous signal”. “Chemical pollution is one of the main factors responsible for the decline of animal and plant biodiversity, at the same level as climate change,” provides Jean Burkard, from WWF France.

Protecting the well being of farmers

“Certainly it is better to suspend than to have a cheap strategy,” notes Sandrine Bélier, director of the NGO Humanity and Biodiversity, contacted by AFP. “But Ecophyto is the main plan which supports farmers in their economic transition”, through the 41 million euros distributed by the French Biodiversity Office (OFB) for analysis, experimentation, and many others.

“Challenging this mechanism means giving up supporting farmers in their ecological transitions,” she warns.

“The issue is the protection of biodiversity but also the health of farmers who are the first victims of the phytosanitary products they use,” she recollects.

With AFP