A European Perspective
New Horizons in Environmental Economics series
Edited by Ekin Birol and Phoebe Koundouri
Chapter 6: Valuing Preferences towards Cultural Landscapes and Rural Heritage: A Perspective from Northern Spain
Maria L. Loureiro and Edelmiro López INTRODUCTION As already mentioned in Chapters 3 and 4 of this volume, agricultural policies in the European Union (EU) have dramatically changed in the last few decades, increasing the importance of measures aiming to preserve the traditional agricultural landscape. Until the end of the 1980s, price and market support policies were oriented towards increasing agricultural production and productivity. However, the publication of the Green Book of the European Community in 1985 announced a change in the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) doctrine. As part of the Mac Sharry 1992 reforms, the guaranteed section of the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF) took responsibility, for the ﬁrst time, for the ﬁnancing of certain measures to stimulate environmental protection and rural development. In particular, Regulation (EEC) 2078/92 was established as one of the so-called ‘accompanying measures’, providing a framework for the implementation of ‘agricultural production methods compatible with the requirements of the protection of the environment and the maintenance of the countryside’. Later, in 1999, the Berlin European Council reaﬃrmed that Agenda 2000 would secure a multifunctional, sustainable and competitive agriculture, maintaining the landscape and the countryside, contributing to the vitality of rural communities, and responding to consumer concerns and demands regarding food quality and safety, environmental protection and animal welfare. Currently, the redeployment of the agricultural budget to multifunctional aspects of agriculture remains a matter for debate in the EU. Some Member States, backed up by most agricultural lobbies, argue that supporting agricultural...
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