It has the potential to help bring nature back by supporting famers to restore it

Agriculture Bill returns with positive focus for nature and climate

Saturday 18 January, 2020

The work of farmers and land managers is crucial in fighting the nature and climate emergency – by protecting soils to store carbon, creating wildflower meadows for pollinators, improving the fortunes of farmland wildlife like dormice and barn owls, and restoring uplands to hold water and prevent flooding in towns. This is recognised in the return of the landmark Agriculture Bill to Parliament.

The Bill marks a clear intention to change how taxpayers’ money is spent towards these environmental ‘public goods’ – this means improvements in the way land is managed in the countryside that benefit the public. This move chimes with the views of 92% of the public who want farming to focus on tackling the climate and nature crises [1].

Ellie Brodie, Senior Policy Manager for The Wildlife Trusts, says:

“Nature is declining at an alarming rate and we must take urgent action to implement measures to help wildlife recover across our countryside. The Government’s Agriculture Bill has the potential to help bring nature back by supporting famers to restore it.

“We hope that as the Bill now goes through Parliament, the Government’s focus on turning the tide on nature’s decline is not lost. This can happen only if farmers and land managers are properly supported by long-term and substantial funding to help tackle the nature and climate emergency we face”.

As the Bill makes its passage through Parliament, and as agriculture policy is developed over the coming months, The Wildlife Trusts will be pressing the Government to:

  •  Maintain the focus of the Agriculture Bill on public goods.
  • Quickly progress the development of agriculture policy to replace the European Union’s Common Agricultural Policy – specifically the flagship Environmental Land Management system (ELM).
  • Reward farmers and land managers properly through long-term and substantial funding – at least £3bn - for their role in fighting the climate and nature crisis and delivering benefits to society for which the market cannot pay[2].
  • Ensure that future trade deals and legislation prevent damage to wildlife and ecosystems now and do not limit the ability of future generations to grow food and timber and have access to clean water.


[1] An online omnibus poll with 2140 UK adults was conducted by YouGov on behalf of Wildlife and Countryside Link between 18-19 December 2019. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK adults (aged 18+)
[2] See 3 billion needed for nature friendly farming


Share this

Top news stories

2020-07-01 Visitor Centres Update Visitor Centres Update
Wednesday 01 July, 2020
Thank you so much for your support and patience during these difficult times. As Government restrictions continue to...
2020-06-18 Inspired by the wild Inspired by the wild
Thursday 18 June, 2020
Nature-loving celebs in sparkling line-up for The Wildlife Trusts’ Big Wild Weekend 19-21 June! Enjoy all the ...
2020-06-08 World Oceans Day call for High World Oceans Day call for Highly Protected Marine Areas 
Monday 08 June, 2020
The Wildlife Trusts call for an ambitious delivery plan for Highly Protected Marine Areas within a year, backing reco...
2020-06-05 Check before you come to the N Check before you come to the Norfolk Coast
Friday 05 June, 2020
Organisations along the Norfolk Coast are working hard to make the area of outstanding natural beauty safe for visito...
2020-06-01 Summer survey to spot insects Summer survey to spot insects
Monday 01 June, 2020
Can you spot the messenger of good tidings, the creature of habit and the gardener’s helpful bumblebee this sum...
2020-05-21 New review shows the benefits New review shows the benefits of daily nature contact as 30 Days Wild draws close
Thursday 21 May, 2020
The feel-good factor from simple daily contact with nature can last for months, once initiated, according to a new re...
2020-05-18 NWT reaction to conditional su NWT reaction to conditional support for Western Link road
Monday 18 May, 2020
Norfolk Wildlife Trust is dismayed to learn that central government support has been given to the Western Link road f...
2020-05-13 Coronavirus Update Coronavirus Update
Wednesday 13 May, 2020
Update Friday 19 June and Friday 26 JuneThe beach car park at Cley Marshes is now open. The visitor centre, toilets a...
2020-05-12 Future storytelling technology Future storytelling technology inspired by our oldest nature reserve
Tuesday 12 May, 2020
Leading writers and creative technologists are working with key organisations in Norfolk, including Norfolk Wildlife ...
2020-04-24 Hop to it – will you take up t Hop to it – will you take up the 2.6 wildlife challenge?
Friday 24 April, 2020
Norfolk Wildlife Trust is asking the county’s nature lovers to join in the national 2.6 Challenge and raise mon...
2020-04-23 Rare Norfolk birds the focus o Rare Norfolk birds the focus of up close nest cam 
Thursday 23 April, 2020
Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s solar powered nest cam at NWT Weeting Heath is capturing live footage of a nesting pai...
2020-04-15 Countdown starts to the UK’s b Countdown starts to the UK’s biggest nature challenge
Wednesday 15 April, 2020
The Wildlife Trusts’ are counting down to the start of this year’s 30 Days Wild: June’s national na...