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European Commission seeks views on strengthening actions to reverse the decline of pollinating insects

 European Commission seeks views on strengthening actions to reverse the decline of pollinating insects

Recently the European Commission launched an open public consultation on the revision of the EU Pollinators Initiative, the EU framework to tackle the decline of wild pollinators. The revision will contribute to the efforts of the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 to put Europe’s biodiversity on a path to recovery by 2030. The consultation is open for feedback until 9 June 2022.

Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginijus Sinkevičius said “More than 75% of global food crop types rely on animal pollination. Insect pollinators are vital for global food security, which is coming under particular strain. We need to continue addressing the reasons behind the dangerous decline in wild pollinators, and act urgently to stop it. With your feedback, we can strengthen action to protect them and ensure their comeback.”

With this consultation, the Commission invites citizens and interested parties to express views on the implementation of the existing policy framework. The consultation will also look at how to improve this framework by identifying further actions and resources needed to fully implement the initiative’s objectives, and meet the commitment to reverse the decline of pollinators by 2030. Its results will feed into the revision process and help the Commission shape a more effective policy in close collaboration with Member States.

Background

In June 2018, the Commission adopted the EU Pollinators Initiative, the first-ever EU framework to tackle the decline of wild pollinators.

The initiative set objectives for 2030 on:

  • improving knowledge about the problem;
  • tackling the causes of pollinator decline;
  • engaging society at large and promoting collaboration.

To set the EU on the right path towards reaching these objectives, the initiative outlined 10 actions and 31 sub-actions.

The actions supported an integrated approach to the problem and a more effective use of existing tools and policies. This primarily focused on better mainstreaming pollinator-conservation objectives across various sectoral EU policies, such as:

  • environment and health policies (in particular the Birds and Habitats Directives and EU legislation on pesticides);
  • the common agricultural policy;
  • cohesion policy; and
  • research and innovation policy.

In May 2021, the Commission published a report on progress in the implementation of the EU Pollinators Initiative. The report concluded that overall, the initiative remains a valid policy tool that enables the EU, Member States and stakeholders to tackle the decline of pollinators. However, significant challenges remain in addressing the drivers of decline.  Reinforced actions are necessary in order to deliver on the objectives of the EU pollinators initiative and commitments under the Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 , and to respond to the calls from the European Parliament, the Council and the Court of Auditors to step up EU efforts for pollinator conservation.

Source – European Commission

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