Germany Restricts Use of Fertilizers In “Green” Push

Under the direction of the European Union, Germany has greatly restricted the use of nitrate fertilizers for large portions of farmland in North Rhine-Westphalia.

Farmers in North Rhine-Westphalia are now required to use 20% less nitrate fertilizer in areas deemed to have “problematic” levels of nitrogen.

The new rules are part of the EU’s green agenda, which requires reducing the amount of nitrogen in certain parts of Europe.

The consequences of the ban could be disastrous for food production, reducing yield and the quality of the produce and exacerbating the already growing food shortages caused by the war in Ukraine.

The EU-led green agenda has already led to unrest in the Netherlands. Netherlands’ Agriculture Minister Henk Staghouwer resigned from his post in September following protests against the government restrictions on nitrogen emissions.

Holland exports the most food on earth, behind only America, using a technique known as the Haber-Bosch process, a method of infusing fertilizer with nitrogen to increase yield efficiency.

Haber-Bosch is responsible for the existence of half the world’s population today and is sometimes referred to as “the detonator of the population explosion”because it enables farmers to grow more food on less land.

In July, Dutch farmers protested the restrictions on nitrogen emissions by throwing flaming manure in the streets and setting hay bales on fire.

However, the Dutch government continues to push its green agenda, announcing in November that it is buying out and closing as many as 3,000 farms in the country in an attempt to halve the country’s nitrogen emissions by 2030.

Dutch Nitrogen Minister Christianne van der Wal told members of parliament last week that if farmers do not agree to sell, the buyouts could become compulsory. “There is no better offer coming,” she said.

A ban on Srilanka’s use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides in 2019 led to a drastic drop in production, soaring inflation, and the collapse of the country’s currency by 2021.

North Rhine-Westphalia’s minister of agriculture and consumer protection, Silke Gorissen, called the new nitrate regulations “a step backwards.”

Vice president of the Rhenish Agricultural Association, Erich Gussen, said that the new rules had caused “great indignation” among farmers and suggested that farmers would not accept the rules without a fight.