NFU urges government to strengthen water management strategies

Farmer’ unions are urging the government to strengthen water management strategies after warning that Storm Babet will ruin this year’s harvest.

National Farmers’ Union (NFU) deputy president Tom Bradshaw said productive farmland is underwater. As rots are now “likely to rot,” Bradshaw stressed that the profitability of next year’s harvest is “already seriously compromised.”

“Despite what we’ve heard from government in recent times about the importance of UK food security, this just isn’t being reflected in policies on how the nation’s food production is valued, and how water infrastructure is managed,” he added.


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Bradshaw advices the government to put in place a water management strategy with “significant investment with ambitious upgrades of ageing rural flood defences, drainage and waterways as well as regular maintenance.”

“We also need to look at where farming protects adjacent urban areas by absorbing and holding flood water at personal cost to the farms themselves,” he continued.

“These businesses must be reimbursed for the public goods being provided on the back of government decisions made.

“A serious commitment by government and regulatory authorities to plan, upgrade and invest in the nation’s water management and infrastructure will have benefits for everyone, including our farmers and growers, so they are able to continue producing climate-friendly sustainable food,” Bradshaw concluded.

Climate crisisFood and farmingNature and the environmentNews

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