Theory, Methods and Public Policy
New Horizons in Environmental Economics series
Edited by Gary Paul Green, Steven C. Deller and David D. Marcouiller
Chapter 17: Amenity-Led Development of Rural Areas: The Example of the Regional Action Pilot Programme in Germany
17. Amenity-led development of rural areas: the example of the regional action pilot program in Germany Karlheinz Knickel and Sarah Peter INTRODUCTION With the Agenda 2000 reform and the European Council of Luxemburg the European Union made sustainability and multifunctionality key objectives of its Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). Agriculture and rural areas are viewed not only as producers of agricultural commodities but also as producers of environmental and social goods. Member states now have the possibility of withdrawing support payments in cases of non-compliance with environmental requirements. Since 1992, the year of the so-called MacSharry reform of the CAP, they can also reward farmers who, on a voluntary basis, provide environmental services to protect and enhance the quality of the natural environment, including biodiversity. Cultural landscapes are increasingly regarded as being at the heart of European society’s concern about the future of agriculture and land use. Finding a new balance between societal demands for high environmental quality and the pressures resulting from competition in a market economy is a key issue. New development models aim at sustainable agriculture and maintaining biological and landscape diversities. The European Landscape Convention from 2000 is evidence of the increasing interest in the issue of landscapes (Ministère de l’Ecologie 2004, p. 1ﬀ). It is acknowledged that agriculture provides rural and environmental amenities and contributes to the maintenance of cultural heritage and the economic viability of rural areas. Agricultural production systems range from integrated and often intensive systems, which are competitive on international markets while...
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