Negotiations finalised on strongly revised Nature Restoration Law

09.11.2023 21:55

Negotiations finalised on strongly revised Nature Restoration Law

Aerial panorama over picturesque river valley meandering between rolling hills of patchwork pasture, agricultural crops, rural homes and green summer landscape

Late this evening, negotiators from EU Member States and the political groups in the European Parliament finalised negotiations on the Nature restoration law.

"I want to thank my colleagues for their work and the positive changes that have been made to the text. We welcome the fact that the final text on this law has little to do with the original proposal from the Commission,” says Christine Schneider MEP, who took part in the negotiations for the EPP Group.

"The Commission's proposal was ideologically driven, practically infeasible and a disaster for farmers, forest owners, fishermen and local and regional authorities, especially in densely populated areas. Moreover, it threatened to slow down the roll-out of key infrastructure and renewable energy, vital to achieving our climate targets. We are glad to see that the other political groups have moved in our direction on many of the key concerns we have,” emphasises Schneider.

"The EPP Group will now seriously check the outcome of today's negotiations before the environment committee and the plenary votes, keeping in mind that nature restoration and achieving our climate goals go hand-in-hand with agriculture and forestry. Only then we can secure Europe’s food security," says Schneider.

Notable improvements in the text of the law, among others:
- There is no more requirement to renature 10 per cent of farmland, which would have considerably reduced farmland and contributed to inflation.
- An effort-based approach on the non-deterioration principle, instead of the mandatory top-down approach that the Commission proposed.
- Food security has been defined as a central objective of the law, which is needed to bring down food prices.
- The EU's agriculture and fisheries funds (CAP and CFP) will not be used for nature restoration measures.
- The new rules do not apply to renewable projects or key infrastructure works.
- An emergency brake to freeze farmland targets, if food security or production are threatened.
- The controversial goal of restoring nature to its state in the 1950’s has been deleted.
- Peatland restoration is voluntary for farmers, not mandatory.
- Member States must prioritise Natura 2000 areas, not farmland.
- For farmers, it's the efforts that will count, not the results.

Note to editors

The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 178 Members from all EU Member States

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