CLA calls for renewed commitment to deal with intensified risks of climate change in partnership

12 July 2016

Government must work ‘hand in glove’ with farmers and landowners as we put in place the measures necessary to adapt to, and mitigate the effects of, climate change. That was the message of the CLA in response to the latest report of the Government advisory Committee on Climate Change.

The report, which is the latest risk assessment on the evolving impact of climate change on the UK, highlights risks related to greater incidence of flooding, shortages of public water, loss of natural capital such as species and eco-systems, and new and emerging pests and diseases. It also sets out some of the opportunities, which include a potential increase in productivity in the food and forestry sectors as warmer weather improves growing seasons and the prospects for innovative technology and other adaption-related goods and services.

CLA President Ross Murray said: “Farmers and landowners are on the frontline of dealing with the effects of climate change. They are driving innovations that lead to new techniques to sustain our agriculture and manage our landscapes and habitats. However, more needs to be done and it is vital that farmers and landowners work hand in glove with government, academics and other businesses to roll out best practice and deliver new sustainable solutions that help increase production and reduce environmental impact.

“We are entering a period of change in government policy as the UK exits the EU. This is our chance to ensure that we have a world-leading policy that balances the long-term measures needed for adapting to and mitigating climate change in a way that works for UK food production, while also addressing UK-specific risks and opportunities.

“As a new government prepares to take office in the coming days, we are looking for a commitment to start this process early and to make it properly inclusive. We need a long-term strategy which brings all parties together to meet shared objectives through practical, realistic and affordable measures.”