Yesterday, Friday evening, the pesticide initiative was discussed in the “Arena”. The debate was surprisingly respectful.
the essentials in brief
- On Friday, opponents and supporters of the pesticide initiative fought in the “arena”.
- Federal President and farmer Guy Parmelin was well prepared.
- A 23-year-old climate activist made life difficult for him in the “arena”.
In yesterday’s SRF “Arena” the pesticide initiative was discussed in a comparatively calm debate. Parmelin put on a steadfast performance – but got on the roof by a climate activist.
The pesticide initiative plans to ban synthetic pesticides both privately and agriculturally in the future. The import of such products should also be prevented. Synthetic pesticides are considered carcinogenic and harmful to health.
How do you vote on the pesticide initiative?
The Federal President and trained farmer Guy Parmelin and member of the Council of States Brigitte Häberli-Koller fought against the initiative in the “Arena”. The supporters came from the Green National Councilor Regula Rytz and Dominik Waser, committee member of the pesticide initiative and climate activist.
What it was then that made the Parmelin particularly troublesome: For example, he criticized that action was taken too little and too slowly. The Federal President countered that many measures had already been launched. He referred to the action plan for risk reduction and sustainable use of plant protection products, which was adopted around four years ago.
Precisely these measures would show how useless they are, argued Waser. In this way, they would not stop the extinction of species, nor would they prevent pollutants from entering the soil and drinking water.
Climate activist refers in «Arena» to increased children’s brain tumor rates
The climate activist later spoke in the “arena” about the damage to health caused by pesticides. Waser said that in Europe, Parkinson’s disease is already an occupational disease among farmers. He also referred to the increased brain tumor rate in children in intensively used areas. He named the Bernese Seeland and the Zürcher Weinland as examples.
“We have these pesticides in all areas of our lives. We have it in our food, we have it in us. We have it in the air, in the water, in the soil, ”explained the 23-year-old.
The retired doctor Jerôme Tschudi took his side. He referred to various studies that come close to the proof that pesticides cause disease.
Farmer: “Vegetables cannot be produced without crop protection”
Organic farmer David Jacobsen was also represented in the “Arena”. He asserted that it was not a problem for him not to use synthetic pesticides. Vegetable farmer Simon Lässer, on the other hand, stated that his vegetables could not be produced without plant protection.
According to Jacobsen, this is very possible – he has also found a pesticide-free cultivation option for Brussels sprouts, which are difficult to produce.
The relatively quiet pesticide debate is preceded by a far more aggressive election campaign: Heated debates, destroyed posters by supporters and, most recently, threats against a Green National Council made headlines.
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