The heart of the new policy sees a massive renationalization of decision-making power over farm subsidies. The lack of effective environmental safeguards opens the doors to a new wave of support for harmful intensive farming.
The European Commission’s claim that the new proposal will deliver a higher environmental and climate ambition has fallen flat. The reform pins all its hopes to achieve EU objectives on wishful thinking, assuming that Member States will pursue public over vested interests. The last 20 years of CAP implementation suggests that when given the option, agricultural ministers tend to cave in to the powerful intensive farming lobby. The prospect of increased subsidiarity without increased accountability raises the spectre of a race to the bottom where each country tries to outcompete the other with production subsidies. This would lead to a downward spiral of overproduction, increasingly devastating environmental impacts and collapsing farm viability.
The CAP proposal fails outright to deliver on the fundamental change needed in Europe now.