GN03-21 Natural Capital Tools, Assessments and Plans

This Guidance Note accompanies two others on the topic of natural capital and environmental markets (GN04-20 Natural Capital, Public Goods and Environmental Markets and GN17-20 Guidance for identifying and entering new environmental markets).  This Guidance Note looks at the different ways of measuring, assessing and reporting on natural capital for land-based businesses.  It will briefly cover the reasons for undertaking a natural capital assessment and considerations about the type of assessment most suitable.

Green Heat Network Fund

BEIS issued a call for evidence on 30 September 2020 to help shape a forthcoming consultation on the design a new Green Heat Networks Fund, which is proposed to be available from April 2022.  Heat is responsible for around a third of UK greenhouse gas emissions and decarbonising heat is a key requirement in order to meet government Net Zero ambitions.  A growth in the heat networks sector based on low carbon energy sources will be an important way to achieve this.  In our response CLA calls for the GHNF to be designed to provide support to small rural heat networks of a few properties as well as large networks serving thousands of properties in cities.  Rural areas are off mains gas and oil heat dominated - so offer much in the way of potential decarbonisation of heat by replacing oil boilers with low carbon heat networks using biomass and heat pumps.  There are a great many clusters of rural properties across the countryside where the heat networks model could be usefully deployed thereby helping rural areas to play their part in reaching our collective Net Zero ambitions.

GN17-20 Guidance for identifying and entering new environmental markets

This guidance note is intended for those members considering entering environmental markets or seeking payments for environmental management of their land.  It follows on from a previous CLA guidance note, 'GN04-20: Natural Capital, Public Goods and Environmental Markets', which introduces the concept of natural capital.  This note goes into more detail about the types of opportunities available (both now and in the near future) and helps members understand and evaluate the offers.

Challenges and Choices

The CLA responded to the Environment Agency Challenges and Choices consultation in September, outlining our vision for the future of water management in England.  In our response, we noted that farmers and landowners play a key role in maintaining the water environment, managing flood and draught risk, abstracting and using water efficiency and delivering public goods related to water.

England Tree Strategy

Defra consulted on the development of a new Tree Strategy for England between June and September 2020.  CLA have engaged extensively with its members on this since autumn 2019 through our branch and national committees.  Our early engagement shaped and informed the consultation document and more recent member engagement helped us to refine our positions on key issues and to answer Defra's specific questions.  Our response is in two parts - a document with answers to the Defra online consulation questions, accompanied by a further document making additional points which the online form could not accommodate.

England Tree Strategy - Survey

Defra consulted on the development of a new Tree Strategy for England between June and September 2020.  CLA have engaged extensively with its members on this since autumn 2019 through our branch and national committees.  Our early engagement shaped and informed the consultation document and more recent member engagement helped us to refine our positions on key issues and to answer Defra's specific questions.  Our response is in two parts - a document with answers to the Defra online consultation questions, accompanied by a further document making additional points which the online form could not accommodate.

Financial Assistance Statutory Insstrument Consultation Invitation Privacy Statement

Defra conducted a short consultation during August on a proposed new Statutory Instrument to cover four financial assistance schemes (Environmental Land Management, the Tree Health Pilot, the simplified Countryside Stewardship 2022 scheme, and Productivity Grant Schemes).  The consultation covered issues around what data would be published about recipients of funding within each scheme and as well as the proposed Defra approach to checking eligibility, monitor agreements and enforcement.  Under CAP schemes, Defra was required to publish data about grants given on the CAP Payments website (https://cap-payments.defra.gov.uk/). They propose to replicate this data publication for new schemes.  They also proposed publication of the Land Management Plans that are likely to form the core of the new ELM agreements.  The CLA strongly disagrees with this approach becaue the information in a Land Management Plan may be commercially sensitive and not suitable for publication. 

Planning for the future white papter analysis

The CLA has analysed the government's new planning white paper Planning for the future which set out Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government’s proposals on how to fundamentally reform the planning system in England. The paper is underpinned by three pillars: planning for development, planning for beautiful and sustainable places, and planning for infrastructure and connected places./sites/default/files/Planning white paper analysis.docx(1).pdf

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