Brussels – Greenhouse gas emissions from European farming have been rising steadily since 2012, according to a new European Commission report about the climate impact of the EU’s common agricultural policy.

Pigs in Factory Farming in Germany. © Greenpeace

The report, which was also the subject of a freedom-of-information request, was released by the European Commission on Monday, buried amid the coverage of the European Parliament elections.

Greenpeace EU agriculture policy director Marco Contiero said: “The study shows once and for all that Europe is failing to tackle agriculture’s contribution to climate breakdown. In particular, the EU has been unable to address the detrimental role that the overproduction of meat and dairy plays. Instead of locking Europe further into factory farming, and on track for climate disaster, the EU’s farming policy must enable a transition to producing and consuming less and better meat and dairy.”

Alone, animal farming in Europe contributes 12-17% of the EU’s total greenhouse gas emissions. Farm animals emit greenhouse gases themselves and are often fed commodities like soy, which are linked to deforestation and habitat destruction, and have a major climate footprint.

Greenpeace is calling for a 50% reduction in global meat and dairy production by 2050, to protect the climate, environment and public health. This call is echoed by scientists in a recent report on healthy diets from a sustainable food system.

 

Contacts:

Marco Contiero, Greenpeace EU agriculture policy director: +32 (0)477 777034, marco.contiero@greenpeace.org

Greenpeace EU press desk: +32 (0)2 274 1911, pressdesk.eu@greenpeace.org

For breaking news and comment on EU affairs: www.twitter.com/GreenpeaceEU

Greenpeace is an independent global campaigning organisation that acts to change attitudes and behaviour, to protect and conserve the environment and to promote peace. Greenpeace does not accept donations from governments, the EU, businesses or political parties.