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French farmers urge governments to involve the agricultural sector in the preservation and recovery of biodiversity

The appeal has been produced on the occasion of the celebration in Paris of the UN Biodiversity Summit.

1/12/2021

Bee next to an almond blossom.

On the occasion of the One Planet summit on biodiversity, the FNSEA (National Federation of Agricultural Unions of France) would like to challenge heads of state and government on the need to closely involve the agricultural sector to take concrete actions in the preservation and restoration of biodiversity.

Maintaining and increasing the biodiversity of agricultural land, in particular the so-called "ordinary" biodiversity, is an important issue in the essential adaptation of the sector to climate change. An agricultural environment rich in flora and fauna diversity will be better able to adapt to the various dangers caused by climate change: agriculture must work on both adaptation and mitigation. The challenge is both to strengthen the resilience of agricultural systems and to increase the capacity of ecosystems to store carbon in plants and soils.

As such, the FNSEA is committed to the 4/1000 initiative which aims to show that agriculture, and agricultural soils in particular, can play a crucial role for food security and climate change. In addition, farmers are also committed to the conservation of a remarkable biodiversity: maintaining meadows, wetlands, terraces, etc., but also through their daily actions together with the managers of the territory, which are regional natural parks, greenhouses of spaces coastal or natural, etc.

As their activity is highly dependent on the climate, farmers are acutely aware of the urgency to act on climate change and have a number of tools to help raise the level of ambition for biodiversity. They identified many solutions: we put them together in our 2020 Guidance Report, "Making the climate challenge an opportunity for agriculture", which establishes our vision of agroecological transition, based on the direct complementarity between ecosystems, biodiversity and Agriculture.

Now it is about supporting the sector towards sustainable, resilient and profitable agroecological systems for farmers. The implementation of these solutions should be an opportunity to improve farmers' incomes, a prerequisite for achieving ambitious goals. This can take shape, for example, in the context of contracts for the provision of environmental services, promoting French agricultural products among consumers and through measures to support farms in the agroecological transition, such as those implemented under the framework of the Recovery Plan.

In an open European space and in the face of strong global competition, it is essential to count on agriculture to carry out concrete actions in favor of the preservation of biodiversity, and more broadly carbon neutrality in 2050, preserving the competitiveness of agricultural holdings.


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