Biodiversity Initiative: Over 63,500 signatures 2

Biodiversity Initiative: Over 63,500 signatures

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In addition to climate protection, the protection of insects, birds and other species is high on the political agenda of many citizens. The popular initiative in Brandenburg has already garnered much more than the required signatures.

Potsdam (dpa / bb) – In the first half of the year, environmental and nature associations have collected 63,547 signatures from Brandenburg citizens for their popular insect protection initiative. "Therefore, we are calling on the new state government to finally be effective in protecting species and to promote more nature-friendly agriculture," Potsdam Union of Conservation Union President Friedhelm Schmitz-Jersch said in Potsdam on Friday. Possible new coalition partners SPD, CDU and the Greens would promise a fresh start in state politics. "This necessarily involves adopting a popular initiative, supported by so many citizens."

The 'Save Biodiversity – Securing the Future' initiative calls for bans on pesticide use in certain areas, as well as water courses in the fields, to reduce fertilizer and pollutant intake. For example, pesticides in nature reserves should be completely banned. State-owned land should be leased to organic farms and agricultural subsidies should be used in an environmentally and climate-friendly manner, inter alia for flowering, hedgerows and grasslands rich in species.

In early September, the federal government adopted a "grassroots program" of a popular initiative "with an insect protection program," Schmitz-Jersch said. "It would be incomprehensible if the SPD and CDU rejected it at the state level." He urged the parties to take the popular initiative directly into the coalition agreement. A potential red-black-green coalition wants to negotiate the environment and agriculture next Monday.

A successful People's Initiative requires 20,000 signatures. Then the state parliament has to deal with it. If the latter rejects the requests, a second-stage referendum may be requested that requires 80,000 signatures. "It would not be a good sign that the new state government is about to launch such a confrontation with citizens," Schmitz-Jersch said. The popular initiative wants to continue collecting signatures for half a year, to enable as many citizens as possible in the first phase.

Only on Friday did the National Farmers' Association launch a popular initiative under the motto: "More than just noise – it protects insects, protects the cultural landscape!". A meeting between conservationists and rural associations failed to reach an agreement last Wednesday. Unlike environmental associations, the initiative does not require a ban on pesticides but a reduction in them.

The National Farmers Association also launched a popular species conservation initiative half a year ago. Unlike environmental organizations, this initiative does not seek to ban plant protection products, but only to reduce them. The State Farmers Association did not want to mention the number on the signatures collected on Friday. "We will do this in due course," an association spokesman Tino Erstling said on request.

a popular initiative