Friday 28 April 2023

‘Farming net zero promises don’t match up with Net Zero Strategy’

‘Farming net zero promises don’t match up with Net Zero Strategy’

The UK’s aims for reducing emissions from farming don’t align with the targets set in the government’s Net Zero Strategy.

That’s according to a report by WWF, claiming that the emissions reduction goal set for agriculture and farming by 2037 is 58% lower than what was outlined in the Net Zero Strategy.

This gap means that the policies do not work in tandem and therefore the overall target is likely to be missed, the analysts say.

In addition, the study claims that current rates of tree planting are only half of what is needed for net zero.

It also warns that emission benefits from restoring peatlands is on course to be 80% less than what was outlined in the strategy.

Angela Francis, Director of Policy Solutions at WWF, said: “These figures show the government have knowingly settled for a lack of ambition, making it painfully clear the gap we face to tackle the climate and nature crisis is greater than ever.

“We need a proper decarbonisation plan for agriculture, proper investment to support farmers to transition to regenerative farming and meaningful action to support sustainable diets. We cannot halt the nature and climate crisis unless we transform the way we use our land.”

A government spokesperson said: “We do not recognise these figures. Farmers and land managers can play a key role in helping the UK achieve net zero and are committed to reducing agricultural emissions across the sector.

“Through our Environmental Land Management Scheme, we are paying farmers to develop more sustainable farming practices.

“We have also launched a call for evidence on reducing methane emissions, taken several initiatives to support carbon capture through agroforestry and peat restoration and are currently developing our Land Use Framework which will be published later this year.”

Written by

Bruna Pinhoni

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