AHEAD of COP28, UK Farming Unions (NFUS, NFU, UFU and NFU Cymru) have called upon the UK government and the devolved administrations, together with world leaders, to support a sustainable and productive future for agriculture, growing our ability to produce climate-friendly food at the same time as sustaining rural communities, protecting nature and the planet.
A joint statement said, “Agriculture in the UK is a uniquely versatile sector, which supplies food, fibre and energy whilst taking action on climate change, capturing and storing carbon and contributing towards reducing emissions. Farmers across the world are on the frontline of climate change with drought, fires and flooding threatening global food security.
Farmers across the UK are ready and willing to help alleviate the risks of extreme weather events and to think innovatively about how farming practices can for example enhance flood resilience in rural areas alongside sustainable food production.
“But they will need support to do this, and to ensure their farming businesses can also become resilient to current and future climate-related risks and their impacts including through better protection of agricultural land from flooding and securing a fair share of water, in order to give farmers the confidence to invest for an increasingly uncertain future.
“It is vital that agriculture, land use, environmental and other policies are practical and properly funded, with a portfolio of measures for the diversity of farm types. It is by adopting a holistic approach to farming – considering food production, biodiversity, landscapes and communities alongside climate adaptation and mitigation – that will ensure a just transition to net zero farming in the future which leaves no farmer behind.
“We want agriculture’s role in taking action on climate change while producing for the future to be widely recognised, at COP28 and beyond.”