BSAS, BGS and Stapledon Memorial Trust – Grasslands Webinars – By Ian Howie
06 Oct 2020
BSAS, BGS and Stapeldon Memorial Trust are to be congratulated for running the joint Webinars on ‘Locking in C with Grasslands’ as farmers in England will have to adapt to the new ELMS support system based on them being paid for meeting specific ‘Public Goods’ criteria post 2024, with similar schemes likely in the other parts of GB. Payments will depend on farmers meeting prescribed actions and achieving set standards, where there will be an emphasis on environmental issues with a focus on carbon sequestration and reducing carbon footprints, with an element coupled to good soil management, while at the same time as the need to increase productivity to maintain profitability.
Farmers and advisers will need to have a fundamental understanding of what actions will be needed and how they can be achieved on farms to meet the challenges and the Webinars gave an insight into the science involved with soil carbon sequestration from the basic research related to soils through to the applied practical on farm options, using examples of different grassland management systems, enumerating the effect of a range of different grazing and mowing regimes, fertiliser inputs and the effect of those various regimes on the levels of carbon sequestration.
The joint webinars proved Zoom to be an ideal medium to give publicity to the changes that farmers and advisers will have make to reduce the farming carbon foot-print and showed the value of using this method as a way of giving an insight to background science, through to the practical on farm applications and the two societies, through the support of the Stapleton Trust, should be commended for doing so within an understandable format.