Who should deliver agri-environmental public goods in the UK? New land managers and their future role as public good providers

Kam, Hermann ORCID:; Potter, Clive. 2024 Who should deliver agri-environmental public goods in the UK? New land managers and their future role as public good providers. Land Use Policy, 139, 107072. 13, pp.

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Agri-environmental policies in the UK stand on the threshold of significant change, with wide acceptance that radical changes are needed to ensure a better delivery of public goods in future. The UK’s departure from the EU presents an opportunity to fully realise the “Public Money for Public Goods” principle in the new suite of Environmental Land Management schemes. A likely priority will be the delivery of conservation goals at a landscape scale, which will require the recruitment of a broader range of actors and institutions than at present, including an emerging group of what we call in this paper ‘new land managers’. Understanding the changing dynamics of rural land occupancy, and the characteristics and motivations of these new land managers, will be essential in the future for the effective delivery of these public schemes. Data on land market trends is nevertheless patchy and poorly researched. For this paper, we drew on a survey of land agents in England, all of whom were members of the Central Association for Agricultural Valuers (CAAV), in order to gather information and reflections on contemporary land markets. A key finding is that agricultural policy reform and retrenchment is seen by many of these experts as a significant driver of future change. Taken together with other interacting factors such as the overall tax burden on businesses and the economic and personal situation of farmers and their succession status, many of our respondents predicted significant structural change, with more land coming on to the market for resale. At the same time, increasing demand for land from “lifestyle/non-farming landholders” and the growing presence of people entering the market interested in enroling land for carbon sequestration and natural capital improvements, will mean a shift in the types of individuals and organisations holding land. Those holding and managing land in coming years are likely to comprise an ever more diverse and fragmented community of land owners and occupiers The task for policymakers then, is to deliver a suite of interventions specifically tailored to the various types of landholders in order to engage them effectively into public goods delivery under ELMs.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Biodiversity (Science Area 2017-)
ISSN: 0264-8377
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Open Access paper - full text available via Official URL link.
Additional Keywords: multifunctional rural transition, Brexit, agriculture, public goods, agri-environmental schemes
NORA Subject Terms: Economics
Agriculture and Soil Science
Date made live: 26 Jan 2024 12:33 +0 (UTC)

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