CLA writes to EU Environment Commissioner following farming criticisms

17 April 2015

CLA President Henry Robinson has written to EU Commissioner for Environment Karmenu Vella, challenging his comments made at the Forum for the Future of Agriculture 2015 on 31 March which claim that farmland in EU territory is responsible for destroying shelter for wildlife, water pollution, flooding, soil erosion and soil depletion.

The letter from CLA President Henry Robinson to the Commissioner can be found here and Commissioner Vella’s speech containing the inflammatory comments can be found here.

The letter invites the Commissioner to visit the UK to see for himself the environmental benefits CLA members are delivering on the land they manage. Some key points from this are below:

“The implication of these comments is that the Commission considers modern farming methods to be fundamentally harmful and incompatible with a healthy natural environment. They are not. There are plenty of ways in which farmers are managing the land in sustainable ways and where necessary doing what is necessary to reverse the declines.”

“Moreover, if the Commission really is serious about improving matters it needs to be reaching out to farmers and land managers to encourage and incentivise them to do even more.”