Europe’s rural land faces many competing demands for the provision of food, energy and timber, as well as environmental and cultural services.
There is scarcely any true wilderness left in the EU, so the ways in which land is managed affects the quality of the environment as well as the character and social fabric of much of rural Europe.
The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) continues to be a major driver of land use and management decisions. Other sectoral policies, such as those promoting renewable energy, protecting biodiversity and regulating water quality and usage have an important influence too.
IEEP seeks to inform and influence the development of the key EU policies that affect the sustainable use of rural land and to encourage the integration of environmental priorities into these policies.
We provide independent policy research, analysis and advice focussing on ways in which farming and forestry can help to protect Europe’s natural resources and the wide range of environmental goods and services which they support.
The first in a series of three, this paper focuses on the rationale for the prioritisation of environment and climate goods and services from EU rural land, and gives some insight into how they might be incentivised.
The European Commission has published its long-awaited strategy on food and farming that sets out the EU’s long-term goals and direction of travel to 2030 for the agri-food sector. The Strategy is a key and necessary element of the European Green Deal and together with the new EU Biodiversity Strategy comes at an important moment.
The EU's new biodiversity strategy is an ambitious, constructive and coherent strategy that delivers on the commitment from the EU and its Member States to protect the living world and implement national strategies and action plans to achieve it.
The COVID-19 crisis is bringing new elements to the discussions around the future EU multiannual financial framework – and the negotiations need to reflect the urgency of the crisis.
Since 2015, IEEP has taken part in the iSQAPER project that aims to assess soil quality in Europe and China and provide decision-makers with science-based, easy to apply and cost-effective tools to manage soil quality and function.
This briefing, produced as part of the ISQAPER project, provides an overview of the links between water and soil policy and looks at how the EU water policy framework could be used to enhance the protection of soils in Europe.
The European Commission's Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development. commissioned IEEP (through the Alliance Environment consortium) to undertake a formal evaluation of the CAP’s impact on habitats, landscapes and biodiversity.
To inform future European Commission’s legislative efforts, IEEP’s discussion paper articulates sustainability criteria aimed at addressing the roots of deforestation, ecosystem degradation and human right violations driven by the EU’s purchase of agricultural commodities in third countries.
In its efforts to deliver on the EU Green Deal and to step up EU action, the European Commission launched a public consultation on deforestation and forest degradation. We've submitted several recommendations based on our work on these and related topics.
IEEP has responded to a call for evidence from the Public Bill Committee, which is considering amendments to the Agriculture Bill put before the UK Parliament by the Government.
The CAP is one of the instruments with the highest potential in influencing farming practices and their climate delivery – but is the EU keeping good and accurate track of climate delivery within it?
This briefing paper outlines some of the limitations of the tracking methodology for assessing the contribution of the CAP budget to climate action and explores possible solutions.
The European Commission, in cooperation with the European Committee of the Regions, organised an EU Conference “Halting the loss of pollinators: the role of the EU agricultural and regional development policies” on 21 February.
New report ‘Using Eco-schemes in the new CAP’ provides guidance and inspiration for EU and national policymakers and managing authorities on how eco-schemes could be designed and implemented to drive the transition towards more sustainable farming systems in Europe.
A new report by IEEP outlines what a sustainable transition of the dairy industry could look like – taking into account the environmental, economic and social trade-offs.
A fresh approach to the system of regulation for farmers and other land managers in England is required post EU-exit to maintain and improve environmental standards. A new delivery model should aim to build a more collaborative and long-term relationship with farmers, strengthen compliance and be adequately funded.
The EU’s food sector, due to its high demand for imported agricultural products like palm oil, soy, cocoa and coffee, is a significant contributor to deforestation and ecosystem degradation in third countries.
As the UK prepares to leave the EU, the future agricultural policy frameworks in the four administrations of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales are starting to take shape. This briefing provides an overview of the current state of play, focussing on their environmental aspects and ambitions.
The following analysis looks at the problem areas identified in the latest State of the Environment Report and assesses how well the Green Deal’s policy proposals address the targets and objectives deemed unlikely to be met by 2020.
As the European council debates reducing the next EU budget, IEEP has taken a look at what this could mean for the Green Deal, the Union’s new "growth strategy", and Horizon Europe, the upcoming flagship research and innovation framework programme.