Conservation Covenants

Following the consultation on conservation covenants by the Law Commission in 2013, the Government is now looking to take forward the recommendations set out in their report, with some amendments. This will put conservation covenants into statute as an additional legal tool to aid conservation. A conservation covenant is a voluntary, private agreement between a landowner and another body, which commits the land to be managed for the benefit of conservation.

The CLA has responded, welcoming the introduction of this new conservation tool, but setting out some areas that may need to be refined for conservation covenants to be attractive to landowners.

Climate Change

Climate change is rising rapidly up government’s agenda and new agriculture policy post-Brexit will give landowners and farmers an opportunity to consider both how to reduce their emissions and how to adapt to a warming world. 

Harry Greenfield

Harry is a senior policy adviser who has been with the CLA since 2018. Before joining the CLA he worked for 10 years in a range of roles related to farming and the environment. This included working in parliament for 3 years; working for a farmers’ producer organisation; and working on land use policy for a conservation organisation.

 

Alice Ritchie

Alice is a Land Use Policy Adviser who has been with the CLA since November 2018. She previously worked for the New Zealand government on agriculture, forestry and climate change policy and is a qualified barrister and solicitor, specialising in environmental law. Alice advises on matters concerning climate change and water policy. Areas covered include mitigating greenhouse gas emissions, adapting to climate change, water management and water quality.

Biodiversity Net Gain

The Government is consulting on the introduction of biodiversity net gain into the planning system in England.  The CLA response supports this ambition, which should help strengthen public support for development and could allow landowners to provide biodiversity off-sets.  It stresses, however, the need to ensure net gain does not negatively affect the viability of rural development.

https://consult.defra.gov.uk/land-use/net-gain/

 

GN02-19 Secretary of State Appointed Members to National Park Authorities and Area of Outstanding Beauty Conservation Boards - Fulfilling the Essential Criteria (England only)

Every year the Secretary of State (DEFRA) publishes an announcement of Secretary of State appointed member vacancies on National Park Authorities and AONB Conservation Boards.  The CLA advertises these vacancies to its members because of the importance of ensuring that the land management and rural business voice is represented on these Authorities and Boards.  This guidance note aims to encourage CLA members to apply for these positions by providing guidance about fulfilling the Essential Criteria and the Nolan Principles.

Business Structures

We know farming will change post-Brexit. The Basic Payment Scheme will replaced by a new system of environmental payments, and farmers will need to adapt to a more market facing world. This means the way farmers manage their businesses may have to change too, including the basic structure of the business. 

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