Sustainable Land Use & Agriculture

Date of last meeting :  21 April 2016

Date of last  seminar :  20 April 2016   

Greening of CAP Pillar 1 Payments – can it be done better and simpler?

Aims and scope

The way farming is performed impacts the state of Biodiversity both positively and negatively. The main purpose of the group is to share information on the implementation of best practice on agri-environmental policies including the impacts of direct payments influencing the state of biodiversity.  Our aim is to contribute to an informed debate about the role of farming for biodiversity. We concentrate on the debate on the reform of the European Common Agricultural Policy and the design of integrated Rural Development policies.

Content of Work

The groups work is based on a shared vision: Progressively transforming the CAP into a system that is focused more clearly on rewarding the environmental services arising from land management, where the markets fail to do so. The group acts as a platform for exchanging information on the nature conservation implications of agriculture policy and land use developments.

A secondary focus is the debate on global and European trends (such as changes in population and the consumption of energy and meat etc) leading to increased demand for agricultural land use with knock-on implications for European agricultural and environmental policies. One current area of interest relates to the way that the concept of sustainable Intensification is being used within Europe. To what extent is it possible to produce more whilst impacting less on the environment? Which role can “greening” of the CAP play in this context?


The Sustainable Land Use IG produces the following type of outputs:

  • Statements related to the gathering of evidence on topics such as CAP reform;
  • Contributions to consultations from the European Commission; and
  • Seminars for a wider audience which are designed to explore particular issues, such as estimating the financial resources needed to safeguard European biodiversity or to evaluate particular concepts such as the meaning of 'sustainable intensification' and its implications for European biodiversity or currently the impacts of Greening the Pillar I in the CAP

 All ENCA  statements can be downloaded from the Statements webpage  

Current work

Contributing evidence to the debate on CAP Reform with particular reference to the need for an effective greening of Pillar 1 and strengthening the agri-environmental measures.  The work takes places through a combination of face-to-face meeting (once a year); seminars (every second year) and webinars and teleconferences


The last meeting took place on 21 April 2016 in Brussels.


The last Seminar took place on 20 April 2016 in Brussels.

Greening of CAP Pillar 1 Payments – can it be done better and simpler?

The purpose of this seminar was to bring together the two strands of CAP ‘simplification’ and ‘effectiveness’ in the context of improving both the maintenance and the enhancement of biodiversity in farmland areas. Reviewing the evolution of the Greening proposals during the recent CAP reform negotiations highlighted some important lessons to be learned. Speakers from a range of different Member States also described a range of approaches to Greening whilst seeking to identify the likely impact of the measures on the ground. An expert panel then drew their own conclusions on the evidence presented, in particular by identifying ways in which the human and financial resources devoted to Greening can be used to achieve better environmental outcomes.

More background to the event, including speaker presentations, can be found on the dedicated seminar web page.


Cooperation with other Networks

The work on a common Vision for CAP-Reform takes place in exchange with the UK Land use Policy group;

There is also close cooperation with EEAC Working Group on Agriculture & Biodiversity:

Participants and their role

  • Karin Robinet (IG Chair) and Andreas Krug (Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, Germany);
  • Brian Pawson Natural Resources Wales (formerly of the Countryside Council for Wales);
  • Elisabeth Schwaiger and Helmut Gaugitsch (Environment Agency, Austria);
  • Graeme Kerr (Natural England);
  • Cecile Smith and Maria de la Torre (Scottish Natural Heritage)
  • Lorenzo Cicarese, ISPRA, Italy; and
  • Henk Westhoek and Henk van Zeijts (Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency - observer).
  • Gabriella Silvestri (Federal Agency of Environment, Switzerland)

The IG is open to new members of other agencies inside the ENCA net. We also appreciate contributions from scientists working in institutions which are not members of the ENCA net.  Please contact the ENCA Secretariat for more information.


Amanda Gregory,
14 Feb 2013, 09:24
Amanda Gregory,
14 Feb 2013, 09:25
Amanda Gregory,
14 Feb 2013, 09:25
Amanda Gregory,
14 Feb 2013, 09:22
Amanda Gregory,
14 Feb 2013, 09:25