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McArthur calls for “clear direction and swift action” on climate friendly farming

November 9, 2020 4:00 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Commenting on the publication of a new report into the relationship between farming and reducing emissions in Scotland, Orkney MSP Liam McArthur has called for "clear direction and swift action" to help Scotland's farmers contribute to the country's ambitious climate change targets

The Farming for 1.5 inquiry, on farming and climate change in Scotland, has set out a detailed "transformation pathway", and calls for:

  • Changes to management practices, to reduce the need for a complete land use change;
  • The normalisation of multi-functional land use, to help boost biodiversity and strengthen natural sequestration;
  • Wholescale change in farming advice, training and knowledge development throughout;
  • Long term commitments in energy, land, time and money.

Commenting, Mr McArthur said:

"It is clear that effective land management and sustainable farming practices are key to Scotland meeting its climate change targets. That can only happen, however, if government provides the right incentives and flexibility to help deliver the changes that are needed.

"This inquiry report helpfully outlines the steps already taken by farmers and land managers towards more sustainable food production and use of land. It is important to recognise and value that contribution, while also identifying what more needs to be done.

"What is now needed from government is clear direction and swift action. It will also require recognition that farmers in different parts of the country will face different circumstances and options. Any blueprint must therefore allow each to play their part with the tools they have available."