Saturday, September 21, 2019

ALDE Party Congress, Athens 2019 - "A framework directive on soil protection"

I have an unexplained fondness for Radicali Italiani, who tend to write very intellectual resolutions which read like academic texts. This is one of their more accessible efforts...

A framework directive on soil protection

The Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) Party convening in Athens, Greece, on 24-26 October 2019:

Is convinced that:
  • soil is one of the irreplaceable resources for the life of ecosystems and of man and that it is a substantially non-renewable resource;
  • soil conservation, which is one of the main reservoirs of organic carbon, is one of the tools to reduce the effects of climate change.
Notes that:
  • the main functions of the soil are: the offer of a physical and cultural environment for man and his activities, the production of biomass, food and raw materials, storage, filtration and transformation of nutrients substances and water, the provision of support for the development of biodiversity, the establishment of a carbon reserve and the conservation of the geological and archaeological heritage.
Considers that:
  • European environmental directives compelled Member States to adopt appropriate legislation that in the last years has contributed to a change in citizens' behaviour and to improve the quality of environment;
  • European policies on air and water protection, proper waste disposal, phytosanitary products influenced Member State legislation;
  • in 2006, the European Commission adopted the "Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection" (COM(2006) 231) but the draft of the framework Directive envisaged therein has never been adopted;
  • the above-mentioned strategy accurately lists the threats affecting European soils;
  • soil is one of the biggest organic carbon reservoirs, therefore soil protection is a crucial tool to combat climate change;
  • some Member States, such as Italy, don't have a specific legislation on soil protection.
Calls on all member parties of ALDE Party, Renew Europe Group members of the European Parliament and Liberal Prime ministers:
  • to promote at the European Commission a proposal for a Framework Directive on Soil Protection in order to influence Member State legislation, aiming to reverse the trends and improve the conditions of this irreplaceable environmental resource.

Again, there's not much there to argue with, and it should pass without much dissent.

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