Farmers have faced off against teenage green activist Greta Thunberg outside the European Parliament in Strasbourg over planned restrictions on environmental damage. (EPA-EFE/JULIEN WARNAND)


WATCH: Farmers take on Greta Thunberg outside European Parliament


Farmers have faced-off against Swedish teenage eco-activist Greta Thunberg outside the European Parliament in Strasbourg over the EU’s nature restoration law.

Groups for and against the planned bill were protesting at its potential passage through the Parliament, with climate activists pushing for the new rules to be made law, while farmers demonstrated against what they feel will endanger their livelihoods.

According to a report by Politico, protestors for and against set up their demonstrations on opposite sides of the parliamentary building as the issue was debated inside.

“We demand that the MEPs do not reject this law and vote for the strongest law possible,” Thunberg declared for the ‘green’ protest, adding that the passing of the bill would mark a “betrayal” of “humanity as a whole”.

Farmers, meanwhile, argued that they wanted to help with the push for nature restoration but insisted that the proposed legislation as it currently stands could endanger their livelihoods.

“Restoration [of] nature? Yes!” one speaker shouted. “Restoration [of] Nature Law? No!”

The politicians inside the parliament building appeared to be equally split on the proposed legislation.

Many left-wing MEPs have insisted that the measures are necessary to ensure the future biological stability of the European Union.

“This law is about protecting ourselves, our economy and our country for generations to come by restoring our ecosystems to a strong and healthy state,” Irish Green Party MEP Ciarán Cuffe said in a statement.

“Strong ecosystems underpin our economy and our ability to produce food,” he added, arguing that safeguarding the environment would also help protect against future “droughts and wildfires”.

Those on the Right within the European Parliament have expressed significant doubts about the bill as it stands, with many criticising what they see as the vague wording of the document.

Speaking in the parliamentary chamber, Peter Liese MEP, of Germany’s Christian Democratic Union, warned that voting for the bill as it is now would be like buying a “pig in a poke” or “a cat in a sack”, with there being no way of knowing what the long-term effects of the measures would be.

Sylvia Limmer of the populist Alternative for Germany party, meanwhile, expressed concern that the measures would have a significant negative impact on food production.

“The so-called ‘nature restoration ordinance’ … endangers our food security,” she said in a statement seen by Brussels Signal.

“Under the cloak of climate protection, farm deaths will continue to increase and consumers will find increasingly scarce food almost unaffordable.”

The European Parliament is set to make a final decision on the bill tomorrow, July 12.