Farmers and citizens against the ban on pesticides – Helmut Hubacher

Agriculture must say goodbye to pesticides. But the peasant lobby and the commoners are locked up. If there is no compromise, the initiative on drinking water will be adopted.

When I heard that, it was in me: they are not quite tight anymore? I am annoyed by a decision of the National Council at the end of the summer session. SVP, CVP and FDP sank the Initiative on Drinking Water and Pesticides in one go.

Farmers spray too much pesticides. These toxic pesticides threaten with their toxic waters and groundwater. 80% of the drinking water is extracted from groundwater. Municipal water companies trigger the alarm. It is getting harder and harder to have enough drinking water. These are new sounds in the Helvetic castle in Europe. Do not stop farmers with this molding, the initiators require severe penalties. They should no longer receive direct payments from the federal government. These are on average 50,000 francs per farm and per year. In Denmark, it is the practice.

Drinking water is a priority

The farmers' lobby is practically notorious at the Federal Palace. The CVP's ​​national advisor, Markus Ritter, is its chairman, his colleague from the FDP, Jacques Bourgeois, director of the Swiss Farmers Association. Both managed to incorporate their factions into their line. With the Senior Vice-President this was enough for the majority in the Council.

Without pesticides, agriculture suffers 40 percent crop failure, Ritter said. This is a problem. Nevertheless, she must say goodbye to pesticides. Drinking water is a top priority. Since very different industries have replaced their deadly injections.

Peasants on the big horse

Since the initiators demand this change of "clown", the SP and the Greens would have been ready for a temporary solution. With a moderate counterproposal. At first, so to speak. Ritter does not even make this concession. It can not be prescribed by the state for the degradation of pesticides. If that's the case, then voluntarily, he announces high horse. Farmers know what to do, he says. Not at all. Otherwise, we would have no problem. There is no speculation about drinking water. We can not wait until the last person understands what hit him.

If the boss of the farmer remains unreasonable, the red-green will vote for the initiative on drinking water. And will win. But of course.

Helmut Hubacher (93) was president of the United States from 1975 to 1990. SP Swiss. He writes every second Wednesday in LOOK.