Farmers are bracing for a pay day after Brexit, as Boris sees an environmental push as a priority.
Under “radical” post-Brexit plans, British farmers will be rewarded for using land to help the environment.
Farmers previously received grants under the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), with grant sizes determined by the amount of land they farmed; the government hopes to replace this scheme with one that rewards farmers for using their land for other purposes.
This will entail the creation of new nature reserves, the restoration of floodplains, and the planting of woodlands and wetlands.
Whitehall has dubbed its Local Nature Recovery (LNR) scheme “radical,” claiming it will bring about the “biggest change in farming and land management in 50 years.”
By 2023, it wants 60 percent of England’s agricultural soil to be under “sustainable management.”
It hopes to restore wildlife habitats on up to 300,000 hectares by 2042.
More than 3,000 farmers are said to have started putting the plan to the test.
LNR, according to Environment Secretary George Eustice, will help create “more space for nature.”
“Through our new schemes, we will work with farmers and land managers to halt species decline, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, increase woodland, improve water and air quality, and provide more space for nature,” he said.
“We’re building these schemes together, and we’re already testing and trialing our future approach with over 3,000 farmers across the sector.”
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“Farmers will be able to choose which scheme (or combination of schemes) best suits their needs, and we will assist them in doing so.”
In order to receive grants under the EU’s CAP, farmers had to meet environmental management and animal welfare standards.
The government intends to make these the most important factors in determining grantability.
Tony Juniper, the Chair of Natural England, claimed new ministerial plans marked an “historic shift” six years after Britons voted to leave the EU.
“These schemes, taken together, mark an historic shift in the way we manage our land, putting us on track to produce sustainable food while also rising to the urgent task of halting and reversing Nature’s decline,” Mr Juniper said.
“More than two-thirds of England is farmed, and these reforms pave the way for those who manage the land to produce healthy food while also providing other important benefits like carbon storage, clean water, reduced flood risk, thriving wildlife, and beautiful scenery.”
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