Mercosur accord contradicts EU Green Deal and fails to protect communities, study says

Trade deal will be a failure on sustainability grounds, international researchers find


Kevin O'Sullivan, The Irish Times

Sep 9, 2020


The upcoming trade agreement between the EU and Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay – the Mercosur bloc – “fails across sustainability criteria and stands in direct contradiction to the goals of the European Green Deal”, according to an international group of researchers.


Mechanisms to include and protect local communities; trace the origin of commodities, and to enforce sustainability standards “are lacking throughout the proposed EU-Mercosur deal text”, concludes the research led by the University of Oxford and the Nature Conservancy.


Frameworks to support inclusiveness, such as the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, have been overlooked in the deal, it finds. Researchers also found that mechanisms to trace the origins of commodities with a high risk of driving deforestation, such as beef and soy, are absent.


“Given the widespread Amazon and wetland fires, as well as [German chancellor Angela] Merkel’s recent ‘considerable doubts’ over the deal following her meeting with youth climate activists, our research adds to mounting evidence against this deal,” said lead author Dr Laura Kehoe, an Irish scientist with the LEAP programme at the University of Oxford.


The LEAP programme aims to understand the health, environmental, social and economic effects of meat and dairy production and consumption to provide evidence and tools for decision makers to promote healthy and sustainable diets.


This provisional Mercosur deal...


Economic power ...


Sustainability principles ... 


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