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EU looks to satellites to check farm payments

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EU  looks to satellites to check farm payments

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(BRUSSELS) - The EU Commission adopted new rules Friday which would for the first time expressly allow a range of modern technologies to be used when carrying out checks for CAP payments, including satellite data.

The new rules include the possibility of completely replacing physical checks on farms with a system of automated checks based on analysis of Earth observation data.

The new rules, which came into force on 22 May 2018, will allow data from the EU's Copernicus Sentinel satellites and other Earth observation data to be used as evidence when checking farmers' fulfilment of requirements under the CAP.

Under current CAP rules, EU member states are required to carry out a number of checks on farms as part of the Integrated Administration and Control System, which ensures that any payments made to farmers from the CAP budget are made correctly.

The new rules will allow those Member States that wish to do so to eventually replace or complement on-site checks with automated and less burdensome controls.

Among other benefits, this will reduce significantly the time spent by farmers with inspectors in the field and farmers will also be able to benefit from synergies with other digital technologies, such as crop monitoring and yield forecasting, to manage their farms better.

Paperwork can also be reduced through the improved automation of activity recording. Further measures aiming at simplifying and modernising the policy and its implementation for farmers and administrations will be unveiled next week as part of the proposals for the future CAP.

Modernising the CAP: further information on the new rules for satellite data

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