Taking stock with civil society: a perspective from the CAP Stakeholder Conference

03 AUG 2012

On the initiative of the Agriculture Commissioner Dacian Cioloş, and at a mid point in the negotiations on the reform of the CAP, the European Commission hosted a stakeholder conference on 13 July in Brussels, entitled ‘The CAP towards 2020 – taking stock with civil society’. The conference was intended to bring together the expertise and views of civil society to feed into the ongoing CAP reform process as well as an opportunity for the Commission to re-state the rationale behind their reform proposals.

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Flexible biofuel mandates – a tool for reducing agricultural price spikes?

25 JUL 2012

This question is investigated by Defra economists in a recent analytical paper, 'Can biofuels policy work for food security?'

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OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook Published for 2012-2021

25 JUL 2012

The 18th edition of the Agricultural Outlook was launched on 11 July. The report presents projections for the coming decade on global agricultural production and commodity prices taking into account projected economic growth, population growth, inflation, energy prices and policy implications. For the eighth time, the Outlook has been prepared by the OECD and the FAO together; however, this is the first time it provides an analysis of the environmental implications in their projections, in a supplementary chapter entitled ‘achieving sustainable agricultural productivity growth’.

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Rapporteurs Draft Amendments: State of Play

19 JUL 2012

The European Parliament draft rapporteur reports on the Commission’s legislative proposals were officially released in late May and early June. Following this, Luis Manuel Capoulas Santos instigated and chaired a discussion among expert stakeholders at a high level conference, Shaping the Future of the Common Agricultural Policy, on 20 June.

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Greening Grows Gradually Greyer

14 JUN 2012

Two papers on greening, one to the Agriculture Council from Luxembourg and one from the Commission, have outlined some thinking on changes to the Commission’s original proposals to green direct payments. This short update explains briefly the content of the paper as well as the opportunities and risks they present for the environment

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Global land use issues, land take in Europe and soil sealing addressed at the high level Soil Conference held by the European Commission

29 MAY 2012

On 10-11 May 2012, DG Environment organised a high-level, two-day soil conference in Brussels. Some of the key issues discussed were soil degradation, urban sprawl and food production. These discussions were carried out from a global and EU perspective. The conference was closed by a high-level panel discussion attended by Commissioners Dacian Cioloş and Janez Potočnik and leading representatives of the European Parliament, the Committee of Regions and Copa Cogeca. The second day of the conference in particular attracted the attention of large audiences from national and regional administrations, research circles, environment groups and farmers’ associations across the EU.

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CoR and EESC adopt their opinions on the CAP reform proposals

23 MAY 2012

In their respective plenary sessions on 25 April and 4 May, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) and the Committee of the Regions (CoR) adopted their formal opinions on the proposals for the Common Agricultural Policy reforms. The opinions of these two EU institutions are a mandatory part of the CAP reform legislative procedure and the European Parliament and Council are obliged to take them into account when they agree the legislation and implementation of the reformed CAP.

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European Parliament: The CAP should be a key tool for biodiversity conservation in the EU

24 APR 2012

A resolution on the EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020, adopted on 20 April by the European Parliament stresses that biodiversity should become a much higher political priority and should be better integrated into existing EU policies. In particular, it states that the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) should be a key tool for the conservation of biodiversity, alongside its role in food production and rural development. The forthcoming reform of the CAP, in conjunction with decisions on the next Multiannual Financial Framework, are key to halting the loss of biodiversity.

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‘Environmental public goods in the new CAP: impact of greening proposals and possible alternatives’

18 APR 2012

A new report on the potential environmental and economic impacts of the proposed Pillar 1 greening measures has been written by Professor Alan Matthews for the European Parliament. The findings of this report were presented at the European Parliament’s Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development on 19 March 2012.

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Out of the box thinking on the CAP


RISE Foundation project outlines new thinking on the further modernisation of the CAP

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Rural Development back on the agenda at Cork


David Baldock sets out his view on the Cork 2 conference which he and others at IEEP attended and about what this might mean for the future of rural development policy.

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Climate mitigation in agriculture is necessary, achievable and can benefit the sector in the process


The agriculture sector has great potential to reduce its GHG emissions in a cost-effective way, with limited or no production impacts, as well as gain efficiency and deliver environmental benefits in the process. However, to play and enhanced role in delivering the EU’s climate objectives requires commitment from both Member States and the agricultural sector.

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