The Hague, Netherlands ( Associated Press) — The latest action in a summer of discontent in the country’s lucrative agriculture sector, Dutch farmers angered by government plans to cut emissions from used tractors and trucks to blockade supermarket distribution centers on Monday.
Schiphol airport, the busiest aviation hub in the Netherlands, urged passengers to use public transport to reach its terminals, amid fears that the blockade would target airports as well.
The unrest among Dutch farmers was triggered by a government proposal To reduce emissions of pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and ammonia by 50% by 2030. Provincial governments have been given one year to prepare a plan to achieve the target.
This is expected to reduce livestock and buy some farms whose livestock produces large amounts of ammonia. Farmers argue that they are being unfairly targeted and show little concern for their future.
The umbrella organization for supermarkets called on police to act and warned of a potential shortage on supermarket shelves.
“The blockade of distribution centers hurt the citizens of the Netherlands. Supermarkets make every effort to keep stores stocked, but if the blockade continues, people will not be able to do their daily shopping, the Central Food Trade Bureau said in a statement.
Traffic officials warned motorists to be prepared for delays and potentially slow-moving tractors on the country’s highways, but said there were some problems for commuters early Monday, possibly because many people instead stuck in traffic. Opted to work from home.
Over the weekend, the government appointed a mediator to lead talks between farmers’ organizations and officials to devise pollution-reducing measures. However, Prime Minister Mark Root has denied holding talks with the farmers responsible for the radical protests.
Mainstream agricultural lobby group LTO described the moderator, Johan Remkes, as “an administrative veteran with a deep knowledge of the issues” and said it was open to talks with him.
According to the LTO, there are about 54,000 agribusinesses in the Netherlands with total exports of 94.5 billion euros in 2019.