Main stories

Rural Dialogues | Smart Villages – Turning Momentum into Support for Local Action

The momentum behind Smart Villages continues to grow – both within EU and national policy circles and on the ground among rural communities. The challenge is to translate this momentum into a policy framework that provides fast and flexible tools which meet the needs and expectations of rural communities in different parts of Europe. This will mean avoiding complicated structures and plans, mobilising what exists in each place – and supporting local action rather than words. […]

Latest from EU Member States

Ireland | Agriculture as part of a Just Transition

How can the agricultural sector in Ireland be part of a Just Transition to address inequality in the sector and tackle climate change? Agriculture is not only a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in Ireland, it is also the most unequal sector in the Irish economy in income terms. When it comes to climate change and agriculture, we need to change how we think about the challenge of reducing emissions. Farmers and their communities must play a central role in planning climate action to ensure it is good for farmers as well as the planet. […]

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Czech Republic | “No Forests, No Water, No Future” – Part II: Moving On from Monocultures

Drought, insect infestations, biofuels and monocultures are impacting Czech agriculture and the ability of the soil to do its jobs, from water storage to erosion prevention. In part one of this series we exposed this troubled ecology of soil, forests and water. Next, we look at how history, politics and policy have shaped the lie of the land. With Louise Kelleher in Prague. […]

Latest from Brussels

Series | Where Next for CAP – Can Strategic Plans Deliver?

While the next CAP reform is still in discussion at the Council, and the European Parliament has not yet taken a final position, Samuel Féret explains the rationale of the new concept of CAP Strategic Plans (CSP) for a future CAP as proposed by the European Commission. This is intended as a pivotal piece of the future new delivery model, probably the biggest proposed change in how the CAP is set to operate in the future. The first in a five part article series on where next for CAP. […]

Latest from key partners

Agriculture Atlas | The Pillage of Pillar 2

A fantastic new resource has been published – an Agriculture Atlas. This is a really useful introductory to agri-food and rural policy in the EU, and mostly revolves around how CAP is implemented, including in a number of member states. ARC2020 has an article on Pillar 2, written by Helene Schulze and Oliver Moore. Published by Heinrich Boll Stiftung, Birdlife International (Europe and Central Asia) and Friends of the Earth Europe. […]

Latest from Brussels

Announcing the Agriculture Atlas

Last week saw the launch of the Agriculture Atlas, a collaboration between Heinrich Böll Foundation, Friends of the Earth Europe and BirdLife International on the state of play of EU farming policy. Including a contribution by ARC2020, this is a comprehensive, in-depth and timely resource. […]

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IEEP Manifesto Analysis Part II: PES Promises Fair Play

IEEP looks at how PES policies have evolved since its 2014 manifesto, and examines how they stack up against the recommendations of its own Think 2030 report. It checks for compliance with red indicators – the targets in the 7th Environmental Action Programme (EAP) considered unlikely to be met by 2020, as flagged in the EEA’s European Environment Agency’s 2018 Environmental Indicator Report. So what is PES promising? […]

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Is that all, ALDE? IEEP Manifesto Analysis Part 1

The Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP) has combed through the manifestoes of the main groups in the European Parliament to weed out the empty promises and scrutinize the proposals. First up in the series is the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE). So how did ALDE do on agricultural policy? […]

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Agriculture Committee Eviscerates Green & Fair CAP

The Agriculture Committee in the European Parliament voted today by 27 votes to 17 (with one abstention) to agree its position on the CAP strategic plan. This votes represents a significant weakening of the environmental ambition of the CAP reform process, and little progress on fairness in agri and rural supports. However the next Parliament will have the option to reject this and start anew. […]