Successful start for the Rural Areas Conference

At the start of the “Future.Land.Life” conference, guests from all over Germany were shown one of the most beautiful sides of the rural area. The sun shone on Thursday morning at Lake Kummerow and on the green areas around Malchin.

"But this beautiful side is not enough in rural areas," emphasized Niklas Nienaß at the start. The Green MEP from Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania is organizing the conference, which will last until Sunday, for the third time. Because problems and solutions for rural areas are rarely talked about. How is digitization progressing? How are skilled workers recruited locally? How is health care ensured in the villages?

"There are so many areas, and we talk about them for four days with people from volunteering, politics, administration, associations and science," says Nienaß. They want to work out solutions together to strengthen rural areas.

At the start of the conference, Till Backhaus (SPD), Minister of Agriculture in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, said: “I am grateful that we are dealing with real life in rural areas.” The music in Europe, it plays in Brussels. He is therefore happy about the good exchange with MEP Nienaß. “We need people in Europe who are committed to rural areas.”

The rural areas, warned Backhaus, are not only living, working and recreational areas. “They are also an economic space.” This must also be strengthened, which requires “creative restlessness” and, above all, dialogue. “Nothing beats being in dialogue.”

Claudia Müller (Bündnis90/Greens), Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Minister of Food and Agriculture, would like a much broader dialogue: “The debates that we are having here should be held throughout Germany. Because the problems that people have here in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania are everywhere.”

Solutions are needed for rural areas not only in eastern Germany, but also in Bavaria, Saarland and North Rhine-Westphalia. “To do this, we have to bring the players around the table,” said Müller. “This conference is a good start.”

Even after the four-day conference, politicians must focus on rural areas, demanded Nienaß. “The green transformation is taking place here on site.” This is where wind turbines and solar parks are built, this is where the agricultural turnaround is taking place, and this is where the heating and transport turnaround is most expensive. “Therefore, this necessary transformation must be fair, especially for people in rural areas. Only then can it work.”

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