Posted on Nov 28, 2019
A record-breaking Bavarian citizens' initiative collected 1.7 million signatures - or 18% of the eligible citizens - earlier this year to protect bees and biodiversity.
Inspired by this success, an alliance of 90 civil society organisations is launching a European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) entitled Save Bees and Farmers.
The aim of the ECI is to bring the European Commission to propose legislation that would protect the health of bees and people in Europe. Namely, the initiative calls upon the Commission to phase out synthetic pesticides in the EU by 80% by 2030 and by 100% by 2035.
The initiative also demands that the Commission adequately addresses the acute biodiversity loss and prioritises small-scale, diverse and sustainable farming in Europe.
European Green Party co-chair Thomas Waitz told this website, "The EU is supporting a toxic farming system based on pesticides, artificial fertilisers and agrochemicals.
"As a consequence, natural soil fertility and drinking water resources are decreasing, farmland and food production is falling into the hands of agroindustry speculators. Many smaller farms are closing up shop, climate change is escalating, and our ecosystem is collapsing.
"As an organic farmer and beekeeper, it is particularly tragic to witness the massive decline of biodiversity: bees, butterflies and other insect pollinators are disappearing. Our streams and rivers are becoming more and more polluted, and we are exposed to a cocktail of synthetic pesticides through our food. Without bees, more than 80% of the variety of foods we eat could disappear from our tables, putting at risk the future of our food, our livelihoods, our health and the environment in which we live.
"The European Greens wholeheartedly support the ECI 'Save Bees and Farmes'. It is time for Europe's citizens to have a say on what kind of agricultural model we foster and support, as this is directly linked to the food we eat, to the environment we live in and to biodiversity all over Europe. We invite citizens to support the initiative via Tilt, our engagement tool."
Follow EU Today on Social media: