Fertiliser regulation causing controversy in Germany

The deadline for Germany to avoid EU fines for its excessive soil nitrate levels is fast approaching, but the Grand Coalition is at odds about how best to tighten fertilisation regulations.

In the face of on-going protests by farmers who claim the new regulations will be an undue burden, the Minister of Agriculture, Julia Klöckner of the Christian Democrats (CDU), has focused on increasing transparency through a measuring point network with the German states to monitor the nitrate levels and make changes to fertilisation regulations where needed.

On Tuesday (4 February) in an open letter, Svenja Schulze, the Social Democrat (SPD) Minister for the Environment, attacked the proposal as a distraction from the task at hand and criticised Klöckner’s leadership.

She wrote: “At no time has the EU Commission criticised faulty measuring points in Germany…but rather inadequate regulations on fertiliser law, for which you alone are responsible.”

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