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Little Fryup Dale photo by Mike Kipling Little Fryup Dale photo by Mike Kipling

Working with DEFRA to help shape the future Environmental Land Management System

Since the referendum in 2016 and the UK’s decision to leave the European Union, the UK Government has been clear about its intention to reform agricultural policy that for the past 40 years has been developed within the Common Agricultural Policy.

To make sure that there is a gradual transition from the current system to the new, DEFRA plans to make the changes over a seven-year agricultural transition period. During this period, Direct Payments (BPS) in England will be phased out and in doing so, the relationship between government and farmers will start to change as we move away for a subsidy-based approach to a more business-like partnership.

DEFRA’s aim for the new Environmental Land Management System (ELM) is to: ‘Flexibly deliver long-term environmental objectives set out in the 25 Year Environment Plan’. Through ELM agreements, which DEFRA plan to launch in 2024, farmers and land managers will be paid for providing environmental benefits. The benefits that will be paid for include:

  • Clean air
  • Reduction in environmental hazards and pollution
  • Thriving plants and wildlife
  • Clean Water
  • Mitigation and adaptation measures to minimise the impact of climate change
  • Enhanced landscape

The North York Moors National Park Authority has committed to work with DEFRA to help ensure that the new system delivers positive outcomes appropriate to the North York Moors National Park and those whose livelihoods depend on the sustainable management of the land.

We believe that farmers and land managers within the North York Moors are well placed to deliver the range of public goods that society values and we consider that between us there is considerable experience of past and current agri-environment schemes, some that have worked well and other not so. We want to use this experience to identify and develop a range of delivery mechanisms that allow for the appropriate delivery of public goods within special landscapes like the North York Moors.

In order to do this, we must first identify which public goods farmers and land managers within the North York Moors National Park want to, and feel able to deliver. We are encouraging farmers and land managers within the National Park to have their say through the completion of a questionnaire to be completed before the end of Friday 31 January 2020. We’re also keen that future generations of North York Moors farmers and land managers make their voices heard too so responses are therefore not restricted to one response per farm (although each individual should complete only one questionnaire each).

Please complete the questionnaire and submit your response before the end of Friday 31 January 2020.