In the EU almost 50% of the territory is covered by farmland (both arable land and permanent grassland). Agriculture therefore plays a key role in land management and has a huge responsibility in the preservation of natural resources. The desired relationship between agriculture and the environment can be captured by the term "sustainable agriculture". This calls for management of natural resources in a way which ensures that their benefits are also available for the future.
Given the important interactions between agricultural land use and the rural ecosystems, and the environment the EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) has been increasingly adapted for integrating environmental concerns and to serve sustainability purposes better.
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Related environmental policies: