PAN Europe is a small, not for profit organisation, which works to motivate and co-ordinate some 50 environmental and public health NGO’s, based across Europe, in pushing for more effective controls on pesticides and the wider adoption of sustainable pest management strategies. Since 2002 PAN Europe has placed a specific emphasis on working to promote the creation and implementation of tougher EU legislation on pesticides.
Every year European Farmers release more than 200,000 tonnes of agricultural pesticides which is almost 400g of active substance for every European citizen. The impact of these on biodiversity is huge, especially as much of Europe’s land mass is given over to agriculture. PAN Europe seeks to consolidate its portfolio of lobbying activities by publishing a new report documenting the negative impact of pesticides on European wildlife and the environment. The report will be used to inform EU decision makers on the need to include concrete measures to protect European wildlife and the environment within the new pesticides legislation and to draw media attention to the issue.
An initial research paper into biodiversity loss and pesticides in Europe and North America has now been completed. The paper examines biodiversity of animals and also legislation initiatives, methods of pest management and GM crops.
A 24 page technical publication entitled ‘Pesticides and the loss of biodiversity: How intensive pesticide use affects wildlife populations and species diversity’ has been produced, with specific attention on various groups such as birds, mammals, bees and butterflies, and amphibians. Briefing notes, new webpages, a technical summary, a lobbying leaflet and a banner have all also been produced, in order to effectively get the message to key decision makers including key European Commission officials, all 27 EU Member State Ministers responsible for environmental protection, and key European food retailers.
Members will continue to utilise the lobbying materials produced. The research also triggered a new idea and an annual ‘European Integrated Production Farmer of the Year’ competition was launched with the first awards being made in Spring 2011.