The European Commission is set to unveil its newly revised climate policy recommendations on Tuesday, February 6th, pushing for even tougher CO2 reduction targets but also giving several—although mostly symbolic—concessions to the agricultural sector in response to the months-long farmers’ protest across the continent.

While some of the concessions may look good on paper, others continue pushing ‘green’ policies that will harm Europeans in general and farmers in particular. In practice, the Commission’s rush to Net Zero has not slowed down and will continue leading to higher food prices as European farms are forced to close down and their products are replaced by imports from countries unburdened by EU regulations.

According to the final draft of the recommendations seen by Politico, the Commission pushes for a 90% overall reduction of CO2 (compared to the 1990 levels) by 2040. Previously, only a 2030 target was set at 55% as well as complete climate neutrality by 2050. According to the Commission, the 90% emission reduction by the end of the next decade is crucial for Europe to be able to reach 100% neutrality by mid-century.

But even though these targets concerning the agricultural sector have been dropped from the official paper, it doesn’t mean the EU won’t expect farmers to comply to a certain degree and will likely enforce emission reductions in one way or another, diplomats say.

“Despite all the semantics in the [Commission] there is an unequivocal Impact Assessment making a very compelling (business) case for an ambitious headline target and all sub-targets for sectors,” one official said, pointing at the Commission’s implementation analysis that will accompany the revised targets.

According to this technical assessment that will also be published later on Tuesday, the 90% overall CO2 reduction goal cannot be achieved without substantial cuts in agriculture as well. In practice, this means that the Commission did not truly let farmers off the hook, but only passed the ball to the member states who, in turn, will have to decide on climate measures that potentially hurt them just to comply with the overall reduction goal.


How many times around the world have we witnessed gov’ts having no intention in changing goals or easing restrictions … but instead utilize bait-and-switch tactics to diffuse the energy of the moment?