Switzerland voted on a series of hot issues on Sunday: anti-terrorism measures, regulations to fight the covida-19 pandemic, and pesticide bans.
Swiss voters must decide whether to approve a covid-19 law that will expand the government’s power to fight the pandemic and reduce its social and economic impact.
However, in a campaign marked by intense farmers’ debate, two proposals against pesticides have attracted the most attention.
The first initiative, called “For a Switzerland without synthetic pesticides,” requires them to be banned within 10 years, and it will also ban imported foods produced using such pesticides.
According to the second “clean drinking water and healthy food”, only those farms that do not use pesticides and antibiotics can receive government subsidies.
The amount of liquid manure used in the field will also be limited, which can pollute water sources.
Environmental activists and political leftists support these two initiatives.
The Swiss government hopes that both proposals will be rejected, believing that these proposals will undermine the country’s food sovereignty.
Although urban voters mainly support these proposals, opinion polls show that both proposals may be rejected, and voters in rural areas seem to vote against them.
Under the direct democracy of Switzerland, referendums are held at the national, regional and local levels every few months.
Any idea about citizens, as long as 100,000 signatures are collected from 8.6 million residents, a referendum can be held.
A referendum on new laws approved by Parliament requires 50,000 signatures.
Environmental protection is also one of Sunday’s themes, and new regulations on carbon dioxide are being voted on.
Compared with 1990, the law will adopt tax policies that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2030, including fiscal incentives to set up charging stations for electric vehicles and sell vehicles that use less fuel.
It will also increase taxes on fuel and natural gas, and impose taxes on foreign air tickets.