Final text: Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries and Animal Welfare

This is the final text as presented by the chapter coordinator, please have a look. Just a reminder we gave ourselves until Friday 9th June COB to table amendments.

Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries and Animal Welfare

Towards a Sustainable Europe and a Sustainable Planet
As we are part of nature, our quality of life depends on natural resources like unpolluted water, air, soil and food at our homes. We need to achieve a sustainable and healthy food production for all, now and tomorrow.
We advocate a strong role of the ENVI, AGRI, PECH and REGI committees, provided that lessons are learnt from past mistakes in EU agricultural policies. It is their duty in order to protect our natural resources and change nature’s exploitation into nature prospering.

Pirates demand upholding (and wherever possible, exceeding) ambitious environmental promises and plans made on EU and international level. Both regarding conservation and support of biodiversity in agroecosystems as well as greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture.

Urban and suburban agriculture and gardening need to be encouraged to reduce transport, supply nutrition, spread knowledge, satisfy human needs.

In trade agreements with third countries, the EU shall avoid unfair trade practices based on its trade power. Exports of a European surplus food products into third countries must be reassessed, if they may damage the markets for local food.

Subsidies only for the public good
We want a Common Agriculture Policy that supports natural and cultural diversity. We are convinced that multiplicity of food production which is locally adapted and in the hands of many independent and self-determined actors will grant food security and quality of life in the countryside and cities as well.

CAP should encourage farmers to adapt to climate change in terms of technologies and choice of crops or breeds. The CAP must provide the frame which stipulates equal rights, opportunities and commitments.
The role of subsidies in European agricultural politics must change towards a greater focus on diversity and equality. Financial support must be granted according to sustainability criteria and not based on the land area or production.

As agriculture of the EU provides high overproduction and as production can be marketed by standard market means, subsidies should only support common public good. Ecosystem degradation should not be part of agricultural policy as an excuse for social issues.
To enhance resilience, Pirates want to preserve and support small scale farming and subsistence agriculture.

Use of technology and digital solutions
The baseline ‘no patents on life’ must be strictly realized.
The EU shall establish the frame for open access to digital applications and open interfaces.
Publicly funded data on, for example, climate, weather, soil, and water must be easily accessible for the public. The EU must ensure that any such datasets which have been obtained by using proprietary technologies will not pass into private hands.

EU should do more to incentivize practices leading to preservation and restoration of biodiversity, water retention and capture of carbon in forests, both in terms of regulation and funding. But we have to learn from mistakes of the Common Agricultural Policy. The goal is to help the development of a sustainable industry, both in economical and environmental sense.
EU has to enforce strict protection of old-growth forests as well as old trees in all other parts of the landscape.

Animal welfare
All animals deserve to be treated humanely. Pirates support strengthening measures ensuring appropriate care and management and less painful slaughter, such as phase-out of cage farming as soon as possible, introducing species-specific standards for all farmed animals, ban on export of live animals to third countries and reduction of long journeys of live animals by introducing strict absolute time limits.
Lack of transparency on farming conditions and of education on the welfare of animals in modern farming systems needs to be addressed, e.g. by a method-of-production plus label for animal products.
Pirates support further development of alternatives to meat and incentives to a shift towards a more plant-based diets.

Sustainable fisheries
Fishing quotas must be revamped in order to adapt to the scientifically evident sustainability and to protect small scale fisheries. The EU should expand policies combating illegal fisheries. Marine protected areas should be granted an appropriate and harmonized level of protection by forbidding unsustainable practices harmful to biodiversity such as bottom trawling or extractive activities.
Large scale development of aquaculture should also be closely monitored in order to provide animal welfare, equilibrium between feeding and fishing, better integration in the environment and ecosystem while ensuring traceability.
EU should push for enabling fish migration in rivers, especially unnecessary dams removal.

I support this proposal to be submitted to the 13th council meeting.