The Royal Agricultural Society of England (RASE) has released a briefing paper, to coincide with COP26, highlighting the emission reduction options available to farmers and land managers.
The “Farm of the Future: Journey to Net Zero” paper addresses key policy issues including the introduction of standardised farm-level emissions accounting, energy and carbon transition, sound economic valuation of natural capital, a consistent cross-sector food, energy and carbon transition policy, and the adoption of environmental and carbon impact labeling on food to help inform consumer choice.
Released ahead of the fuller report, scheduled for launch (we can exclusively reveal) at the Low Carbon Agriculture Show 2022 in March 2022 – the paper examines the urgent need to decarbonise the land-based industries. It highlights the vital role farmers have to play and outlines a number of emission reduction solutions including renewable and low carbon energy systems, robotics, new technologies such as robotics, low/zero emission vehicles and fuels and improved environmental resource management.
Philip Gready, chairman of RASE, said
“The role of agriculture in decarbonisation is much wider than energy transition. Farms can take practical action to build and sequester carbon in soils; improve biodiversity; embrace ‘smart’ technologies; and improve resource use and value of bio-resources.
“By working with supply chain partners including feed suppliers, food processors, supermarkets and consumer groups, farmers can play a leading role in reducing our greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.”
The paper underlines the need for improved access (for farmers) to independent decarbonisation advice and support. It also points out that improved soil health, increased biodiversity, the effective management of land and water resources, plus a better valuation of natural capital are all vital in achieving the decarbonisation and food security goals.
The full “Farm of the Future” report, when released in March, aims to clarify future priorities for farmers and shine a light on the associated technologies available.