European Parliament adopts report on EU strategy to reduce methane emissions

Strasbourg, 21.10.2021. The European Parliament has adopted the report for the EU strategy to reduce methane emissions. Manuela Ripa (ÖDP): “If we want to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees, we have to reduce methane emissions in the EU immediately and significantly! Industrial livestock farming is a major contributor to methane emissions – ending factory farming would not only end unspeakable animal suffering, but also effectively combat climate change.”

Methane is not only a powerful air pollutant, but also the second largest contributor to climate change after carbon dioxide. Last October, the EU Commission therefore presented its European methane strategy. The problem: the strategy lacks ambition. “The focus so far is mainly on better monitoring of emissions and is too concentrated on the energy sector. What we need is a complete system change in all three major methane-emitting sectors: energy (19%), waste and agriculture (53%),” Ripa sums up the weakness.

For the MEP, the key to the EU methane strategy lies especially in the systemic change of the agricultural industry, which is the biggest emitter with 53%. “The fact that the report recognises livestock – especially ruminants – as the main contributor to agricultural methane emissions is therefore a great success,” Manuela Ripa is pleased to say. The report also demands that imported agricultural and food products meet the same environmental standards as EU products. In general, the recommendation is to put agroecology more at the centre of climate protection.

Ripa’s Greens/EFA group also succeeded in calling on the Member States to include concrete measures to combat animal emissions in their national agricultural strategies. At the same time, the EU Commission is called upon to analyse these measures thoroughly in order to ensure political coherence.

The report also does a lot for consumer protection. For example, it recommends a higher consumption of plant-based food and at the same time calls on the Commission to tackle the current excessive meat consumption. “This will not only benefit the health of the EU population, but also climate and animal protection,” says Ripa.


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