McConalogue opens CAP environmental assessment consultation

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue has opened a public consultation on the draft ‘scoping report’ for the environmental assessment of the government’s ‘Strategic Plan’ for the next Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).

‘Scoping’, according to the department, is the process of determining the range and level of detail of the environmental issues to be considered for the assessment.

According to the minister, the consultation is “an important aspect” of the development of the Strategic Plan for 2023 to 2027.

Minister McConalogue said that the public will be invited to give submissions, and not just environmental groups.

In addition to consulting with the designated environmental authorities, my department is conducting a wider non-statutory public consultation to encourage stakeholder engagement and help inform the environmental assessment of the CAP Strategic Plan.

“I look forward to a full engagement by the relevant bodies and by stakeholders in this process. This is a crucial aspect of forming the next CAP, so I am encouraging people to come forward with their views on this,” he added.

The department has been working on a strategic plan for CAP for a number of months, following agreement over funding for CAP in the next EU budget.

The European Commission is aiming to provide more leeway to member states in how they formulate their individual CAP programmes, as long as they meet certain overarching goals in relation to the environment.

For this reason, each member state is required to draft and submit their own strategic plans for the commission to sign-off on.

The consultation document can be viewed here.