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Agriculture: Uplands Development

Volume 692: debated on Tuesday 12 June 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will launch a new programme for uplands development, including the farming of (a) carbon from peat bogs; and (b) water in hills; and livestock expansion with new sustainable targets. [HL4128]

The Government announced in December 2006 that we would be fully integrating uplands support into environmental stewardship and that we were minded to do so by putting in place a specific uplands strand to the entry level stewardship (ELS) scheme by no later than 2010.

To ensure the fullest environmental benefit from the successor to the hill farm allowance, we are currently carrying out further scoping work with Natural England and stakeholders. This includes consideration of the key land management issues in the uplands, such as the protection of natural resources (including water and peat), and the role of upland farmers in maintaining these much-loved landscapes through sustainable livestock management. There will be a further consultation on the final scheme design prior to implementation.