Farming & The Environment – Farming Monthly National https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk UK Farming Magazine & Agricultural News Thu, 12 Nov 2020 20:10:09 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.6.3 No job too big for the Kawasaki full 2021 MULE and ATV Range https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/news/11348-no-job-too-big-for-the-kawasaki-full-2021-mule-and-atv-range/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/news/11348-no-job-too-big-for-the-kawasaki-full-2021-mule-and-atv-range/#respond Thu, 12 Nov 2020 20:10:06 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11348 With demand for the Kawasaki MULE and ATV machines soaring, the 2021 range is available now from the extensive Kawasaki utility dealer network.  Despite the COVID-19 pandemic forcing the shutdown of production lines, demand for the Kawasaki utility range has remained strong and the brand is pleased to announce the availability of its full 2021 […]

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With demand for the Kawasaki MULE and ATV machines soaring, the 2021 range is available now from the extensive Kawasaki utility dealer network. 

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic forcing the shutdown of production lines, demand for the Kawasaki utility range has remained strong and the brand is pleased to announce the availability of its full 2021 range of Kawasaki MULE and ATV products. 

2021 BRUTE FORCE 750 4x4i EPS

The 2021 collection comprises of four MULE vehicles, the MULE PRO-DXT, MULE PRO-DX, MULE PRO-MX and the MULE SX. The entire range is designed for use by outdoor professionals, such as farmers, gamekeepers and grounds-care experts, providing them with the ability to easily transport equipment over various terrain. 

The MULE SX 4×4 rides on 24 inch tyres and offers selectable 2WD and 4WD with Hi-Low dual-range transfer case and rear differential lock. The 16-litre fuel tank extends the operational range of the SX with its 401cc four-stroke, OHV, air-cooled engine, delivering power reliably and economically, with a restricted top speed of 25mph. The tubular steel chassis provides the best balance of rigidity, strength and ride comfort with off-road pursuits. Drawing on the design of the PRO Series console, the dashboard puts all controls within easy reach and sight of the operator, adding ease to everyday use. The easy-to-load tilting cargo bed can carry up to 181kg of tools and materials, and an extra 500kg can be towed behind by fitting a tow ball to the ever-eager MULE. 

Brute Force 750 4x4i EPS

The PRO-MX offers the ideal balance between compact and full size UTVs. With conveniently small dimensions (2,795 mm long x 1,525 mm wide x 2,005 mm wheelbase with a turning circle of just 4.2m), the carrying and towing capacity does not suffer at 317kg and 680kg respectively. These small dimensions are maintained thanks to minimised bodywork overhang, also helping to reduce the chance of knocking or scraping a bumper when driving off road. Beefy 25’’ tyres on 12’’ rims provide incredible off-road traction and help to ensure ample ground clearance to protect the MULE PRO-MX. This single-cylinder 700cc petrol powered MULE is perfectly positioned between the MULE SX and MULE PRO-DX, giving customers even greater choice to find the perfect vehicle for their needs.

MULE PRO-DXT™

Working in tough environments demands durable, reliable machinery that continues to deliver in all conditions. Dirt, terrain and weather won’t stop the ultra-rugged MULE PRO-DX and PRO-DXT, with all essential systems designed to resist water, dust and debris. A steel ladder chassis is ready for all terrains, strong where it needs to be and flexible where it matters. Whilst the three-cylinder diesel engine guarantees the torque needed to carry loads and crew reliably, hour after working hour. 

High torque diesel power moves cargo and crew quickly with the safety assurance of Roll-Over Protection System (ROPS). On site or on the farm, the class-leading 453 kg capacity of the long and low tipping cargo bed and 907 kg towing potential makes light work of the heaviest tasks. The tilting cargo bed is operated by a two-lever release system for easy opening and closing. And the innovative MULE PRO-DXT quickly changes from four to two seats in a few, swift moves that a single operator can manage in less than one minute.

MULE SX 4×4

Alongside the Mule products, the 2021 collection also features two ATV machines, the Brute Force 750 4x4i EPS Camo and the Brute Force 750 4x4i EPS in Super Black. These high-performance vehicles feature a range of industry-leading features, providing all-day working performance. Kawasaki ATVs are designed for all-day comfort and durability to assist in everyday tasks. Whether you are tending to animals in rough terrain, repairing a run of fencing or require industry leading power, a Kawasaki ATV will help you get the job done. For those looking for an entry version, Kawasaki also has the Brute Force 300 ATV available. All Kawasaki ATV vehicles have CVT transmission as standard, contributing to ease of operation and leaving you free to concentrate on the terrain ahead.

The full range is available now, visit the Kawasaki website to locate your local Kawasaki utility dealer, with decreased production but increased demand, it is recommended customers place their orders as soon as possible.

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Breakthrough in sustainable diesel production https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11193-breakthrough-in-sustainable-diesel-production/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11193-breakthrough-in-sustainable-diesel-production/#respond Thu, 14 Feb 2019 12:36:42 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11193 A new technology that converts biogas into a high-grade liquid fuel that can be used as a direct replacement for fossil fuels is being showcased for the first time at Alliance Dairies in Florida on February 18, 2019. The process developed by UK-based technology company Renovare Fuels, allows biogas from waste material to be used […]

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Renovare CTO Devin Walker, standing in front of Renovare’s Demo Unit

A new technology that converts biogas into a high-grade liquid fuel that can be used as a direct replacement for fossil fuels is being showcased for the first time at Alliance Dairies in Florida on February 18, 2019. The process developed by UK-based technology company Renovare Fuels, allows biogas from waste material to be used as a direct replacement for traditional fossil fuels, with the potential to displace billions of litres of fossil fuel each year.

During this period, Renovare Fuels will demonstrate its self-sustaining, carbon neutral process of fuel production and explain how its technology could provide a practical solution to the growing problem of greenhouse gases. The production process is carbon neutral and the entire logistics supply chain may create a fraction of the greenhouse gas emissions of fossil fuels.

“There has been a significant push to recycle plastic and paper products over the past two decades, but we aren’t seeing the same push to reuse biodegradable waste like food-waste and agricultural materials,” explained Devin Walker, CTO at Renovare Fuels. “That leaves a lot of potential fuel sources lying in landfills. Processes like anaerobic digestion (AD) can be used to produce fuels, but the overall process hasn’t previously been particularly efficient.

“By using a specially developed Fischer-Tropsch synthesis catalyst and advanced process engineering techniques, Renovare Fuels’ technology can efficiently turn biogas into middle distillate fuel. The feedstock is sourced locally to the site and classified as a waste product, so the production cycle is objectively carbon neutral.

“We estimated using the greenhouse gas methodology in the EU’s Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO) that the entire logistical supply chain, from feedstock collection to storage and refuelling, would produce only three grams of carbon dioxide equivalent per megajoule of biomass. This is only three per cent of the 94 g it would be using fossil fuels.”

The abundance of waste products means that the production of the biodiesel promises a low-cost sustainable alternative to fossil fuels. Renovare Fuels believes that the fuel could be priced at under 50 pence per litre in a quantity that could reshape the energy sector.

“In 2016, DEFRA reported that 31.8 MM tons of biodegradable waste is produced each year in the UK,” continued Walker. “Based on this figure, we estimate that our technology and the resultant fuel could displace over two billion litres of fossil fuels annually. This would lower greenhouse gas emissions by around five million tonnes per year.”

The fuel produced using Renovare Fuels’ technology is distinct from typical biodiesel products in that it is physically and chemically similar to conventional fossil fuels. This allows it to be used in engines without requiring design modifications and also means it does not require blending with unsustainable fuels.

Renovare Fuels’ technology was developed at the University of South Florida in conjunction with NASA and the US Department of Energy. The technology previously proved successful in converting biogas into usable diesel during a trial at a US landfill in 2017.

In October 2018, Renovare Fuels was awarded Innovate UK support for aviation fuel testing through the Sustainable Aviation Fuel for Clean Growth programme in Sheffield.

To witness Renovare Fuels’ breakthrough process in action, contact Renovare Fuels at info@renovare-fuels.co.uk for details of on-site demonstration invitations. For further information on the technology and the sustainable liquid fuel it produces, visit the Renovare Fuels website at www.renovare-fuels.co.uk

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Shropshire farmer fined £16,000 for environmental offences https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/11137-shropshire-farmer-fined-16000-for-environmental-offences/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/11137-shropshire-farmer-fined-16000-for-environmental-offences/#respond Wed, 18 Apr 2018 15:31:05 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11137 On 16 April 2018, Telford Magistrates’ Court fined the 55 year-old £16,000 and ordered him to pay £20,000 in costs, along with a £170 victim surcharge. The charges were brought by the Environment Agency under the Nitrate Pollution Prevention Regulations 2008 and Sections 24(1) and (4) of the Water Resources Act 1991. The Environment Agency […]

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Environment_Agency

On 16 April 2018, Telford Magistrates’ Court fined the 55 year-old £16,000 and ordered him to pay £20,000 in costs, along with a £170 victim surcharge.

The charges were brought by the Environment Agency under the Nitrate Pollution Prevention Regulations 2008 and Sections 24(1) and (4) of the Water Resources Act 1991.

The Environment Agency discovered that between May 2015 and April 2017, the Defendant had abstracted on average over 20,000 litres of water per day from a borehole on the farmland without an abstraction licence.

Between October 2016 and April 2017, Mr Fair was abstracting an average of 67,000 litres of water per day, more than three times the legal limit. This water was being used in farming activities but was also being supplied to eight nearby tenanted properties.

Evidence gathered by Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council between December 2014 and May 2016 revealed that the water supplied to these properties was failing quality standards for nitrates.

A formal notice was served on Mr Fair on 13 October 2015, requiring him to notify the residents of the supplied properties advising them that the water was not fit for consumption due to high nitrate levels. The notice was withdrawn in May 2016, as a result of improvements made to the supply infrastructure by Mr Fair, including installation of a chlorination dosing pump.

Mr Fair’s farm lies in an area designated a nitrate vulnerable zone. Farmers practising within these zones are required to plan and record their farming activities, including the application of manures and fertilisers, in a manner prescribed under the Nitrate Pollution Prevention Regulations 2008. The purpose of these Regulations is to protect the environment by reducing nitrate pollution.

In April 2015, the Environment Agency carried out an inspection of farming activities at Peatswood Farm. Mr Fair failed to produce records showing that in 2014 he had carried out the necessary planning and recording of his farming activities under the Nitrate Pollution Prevention Regulations 2008.

As a result of his failure to comply with the Regulations, Mr Fair was reported to the Rural Payments Agency and received a 28% reduction in his Single Farm Payment for the year 2014. The Single Farm Payment is a subsidy designed to help farmers to meet their environmental, public, animal and plant health standards.

In mitigation, Mr Fair’s barrister stated that Mr Fair had no previous convictions and was a man of previous good character. He admitted that Mr Fair had failed in his obligations under the legislation but that he had sought out new professional advice and was working to improve his farming practices. Mr Fair’s barrister stated that the high nitrate levels in drinking water had been caused in-part by his tenants removing nitrate filters installed within the properties because they caused a reduction in water pressure. He further stated that Mr Fair had suffered family bereavements in 2015 and 2016.

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Talks ongoing to avoid irrigation abstraction fee hike https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/11133-talks-ongoing-to-avoid-irrigation-abstraction-fee-hike/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/11133-talks-ongoing-to-avoid-irrigation-abstraction-fee-hike/#respond Mon, 09 Apr 2018 13:14:04 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11133 Water level management authorities across the country are continuing to raise significant concerns at the threat of licence fee hikes that could end up hitting the farmer’s pocket, following recent changes to water abstraction regulations. Previously and for many years, Internal Drainage Boards (IDBs) have transferred water from main rivers to local drains for the […]

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Innes-Thomson-ADA

Innes Thomson, Chief Executive, ADA

Water level management authorities across the country are continuing to raise significant concerns at the threat of licence fee hikes that could end up hitting the farmer’s pocket, following recent changes to water abstraction regulations.

Previously and for many years, Internal Drainage Boards (IDBs) have transferred water from main rivers to local drains for the benefit of farmers, who then abstract the water for irrigation. There are also environmental benefits of augmentation of water levels.

The new regulations for water transfer licencing, which came into force from 1 January 2018, removes exemption for a number of activities. Amongst these changes is a requirement for transfers of water from main rivers into internal drainage districts to be licenced by the Environment Agency.

Innes Thomson, chief executive of ADA, the membership organisation for drainage, water level and flood risk management authorities, explained, “Using information gathered from IDBs by ADA, the Environment Agency has estimated that around 150 licences will be required collectively by IDBs, each costing £1,500.

“This will add an expense and bureaucratic burden that will stifle effective close working between risk management authorities on water resources and environmental management. ADA is simply seeking treatment of IDBs as responsible water managers playing their vital part in working with the EA rather than being treated as businesses using the water”

Water transfers in themselves are not abstractions, the water is not lost to the river network unless it is further abstracted by a landowner. Water abstracted from within an IDB district is licenced by the Environment Agency, therefore the new legislation could see landowners effectively charged twice for the same water, as IDBs will most likely need to pass additional fees on to ratepayers.

Some 90 per cent of water transfers are required for facilitating abstraction, and for other environmental reasons such as flood prevention and the creation of wetlands and other habitats.

At the ADA Conference in November 2017, Environment Minister Dr Thérèse Coffey confirmed that she wants IDBs to play a central role as Defra plan for better local and national water management. Dr Coffey emphasised that “land drainage activities to prevent flooding and IDB abstractions within drainage districts will remain exempt” and she went on to assure delegates that she will be looking at “effective funding streams to recover costs from those that benefit.”

Mr Thomson added, “An initial meeting took place in late January, involving the Environment Agency, Defra, ADA, Natural England and IDB representatives, to investigate the proposal for cost recovery made by the Minister. A number of potential options were identified including enabling primary legislation.

“Further meetings will be required to narrow down the options available that could enable IDBs to recover costs from the beneficiaries of their water resource management activities. It is essential that any changes are acceptable to all parties concerned and considered a fair treatment of the expertise of IDBs working alongside the EA in managing our valuable water resources,” he said.

ADA hopes that a consensus on a pragmatic, light-touch administrative solution can be reached over the next few months which may alter the circumstances where IDBs need to apply for and pay for licences.

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Duisburg municipal utility CHP plant equipped with urea injection system https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11122-duisburg-municipal-utility-chp-plant-equipped-with-urea-injection-system/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11122-duisburg-municipal-utility-chp-plant-equipped-with-urea-injection-system/#respond Mon, 19 Mar 2018 13:36:58 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11122 The German CHP specialist ETW Energietechnik has delivered natural gas CHP units with selective catalytic reduction (SCR) technology for the first time. Thus, Stadtwerke Duisburg is the first user of Adblue technology from ETW. The family business from Moers comprises three plants with MWM engines of the type TCG 2020V12, each with an electrical output […]

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ETW-SCR-KAT

ETW Energietechnik delivers the first combined heat and power
plants with “SCR” exhaust gas cleaning system

The German CHP specialist ETW Energietechnik has delivered natural gas CHP units with selective catalytic reduction (SCR) technology for the first time. Thus, Stadtwerke Duisburg is the first user of Adblue technology from ETW. The family business from Moers comprises three plants with MWM engines of the type TCG 2020V12, each with an electrical output of 999 kilowatts.

Efficiency: 94 percent

Two of the three ETW plants with significantly reduced nitrogen emissions have been in operation since the end of 2017 – at the Duisburg-Mitte and Duisburg-Süd sites. The third plant in Duisburg-Süd will also be commissioned at the beginning of 2019, with all three plants achieving a very good overall efficiency of 94 percent each with an intelligent heat utilisation concept based on a second installed exhaust gas heat exchanger stage (AWT) and a heat recovery from the mixed cooling circuit.

Below all current limit values

With the fully operational, fully automatic SCR catalytic converter plant including urea injection (Adblue), the ETW plants comply with the latest state of the art and therefore fall below all currently required exhaust emission limits:

  • NOx: < 100 mg/Nm³ (exhaust gas dry at 5 percent O2)
  • CO: < 100 mg/Nm³ (exhaust gas dry at 5 percent O2)
  • Formaldehyde: < 20 mg/Nm³ (dry flue gas at 5 percent O2)

Highest environmental standards already met

From a legal point of view, compliance with the limit values from the “TA-Luft” version of 2002 is still a legal requirement in Germany. It specifies that 500 milligrams of NOx, 300 milligrams of CO and 30 milligrams of formaldehyde per standard cubic meter must not be exceeded. The amendment to the TA-Luft of 2017 has been initiated, but has not yet been adopted. The new, higher limit values, which the ETW CHPs in Duisburg already comply with, are fixed here. These stricter values were written into the specifications by Stadtwerke Duisburg. By complying with the amended 2017 directive, utilities aim to generate their energy as environmentally friendly and sustainable as possible.

Reaction to customer requirements

ETW Energietechnik‘s innovative Adblue CHP units are among the first SCR plants in Germany that are currently operating under full load on the grid. ETW managers are absolutely certain that others will follow and that Adblue will become the standard. “Usually, we currently only deliver the standard SCR catalytic converter housing with a single-nozzle section for Adblue with the elements for compliance with the values according to TA-Luft 2002. However, this simplifies retrofitting considerably and enables us to react immediately to customer requirements”,emphasizes the sales manager at ETW, Alexander Szabo.

Be sure to plan for upgrading

“Accordingly, we are already advising our customers to plan the SCR catalytic converter in the form of a casing, including the injection line, for all systems”,adds Alexander Szabo.

The specialists at ETW Energietechnik GmbH are certain that the limit values from the amendment 2017 will be adopted in the foreseeable future and will become generally applicable to all CHP plants with a transition period – certainly also throughout Europe. In Italy, even stricter limit values are required. All CHP units can be upgraded by ETW Energietechnik along the emission regulations throughout Europe.

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Act quickly to avoid grid application fees https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11120-act-quickly-to-avoid-grid-application-fees/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11120-act-quickly-to-avoid-grid-application-fees/#respond Mon, 19 Mar 2018 13:24:54 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11120 Farmers and landowners who are interested in energy generation or storage projects should act quickly to avoid potentially steep fees. From 6 April network operators in England, Wales and Scotland will be able to charge up-front fees for grid connection offers, which could run into thousands of pounds. Hugh Taylor, chief executive of independent power […]

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Hugh Taylor, CEO Roadnight Taylor

Farmers and landowners who are interested in energy generation or storage projects should act quickly to avoid potentially steep fees. From 6 April network operators in England, Wales and Scotland will be able to charge up-front fees for grid connection offers, which could run into thousands of pounds.

Hugh Taylor, chief executive of independent power consultant Roadnight Taylor, recently surveyed a range of network operators to ascertain their plans. “Every one of the five operators surveyed said they intend to introduce fees, at varying levels up to £7,880+VAT,” he explains. “This does differ according to the market segment, with higher voltage works likely to encounter the greatest fees and lower voltage schemes facing no or modest charges.”

Network operators have always been able to charge assessment and design fees to cover their work in modelling the electricity network, designing the connection and undertaking surveys, site visits, drawing plans, etc. However, until now those fees have been charged upon acceptance of the connection offer. To avoid the risk of bad debt, Ofgem is also proposing to allow operators to withhold any connection offer until the fee had been paid.

“One issue is that network operators have been inundated with highly speculative applications from developers, often to connect to inappropriate parts of the network,” says Mr Taylor. “In one case, an operator received 250 applications from a single applicant in a two-week period – the cost of which ran to some £250,000 for the operator – yet very few of the offers were taken up.

“Another disturbing cause is in unreputable ‘experts’ leading landowners to believe they have a suitable site and charging large sums to submit inappropriate applications which stand no chance of success,” he adds.

As operators are legally required to produce a connection offer for every application, they have faced huge amounts of work, while acceptance rates for offers have dropped as low as 6%. “It therefore makes sense that these fees are brought up front – the issue is that it affects genuine, well-considered applications as well as those who adopt a scattergun approach.”

Mr Taylor sits on the steering group of five of the nation’s six network operators, and says some are also planning to introduce fees for informal budget estimates. “Some are concerned that, while there will be fewer formal applications, there will be a proliferation of budget estimate requests, so there are plans to charge up to £620+VAT for these.”

To maximise their chances of success it’s vital that landowners take professional advice, he explains. “Energy generation projects must meet planning and site conditions, but it is the grid connection that is the lynchpin, so it’s vital to get that right.”

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Environmental policy and food production must go hand in hand https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/11089-environmental-policy-and-food-production-must-go-hand-in-hand/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/11089-environmental-policy-and-food-production-must-go-hand-in-hand/#respond Fri, 12 Jan 2018 08:35:02 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11089 Farming and the environment must go hand-in-hand and producing quality, home-grown food is critical to the future of the country, say’s the NFU. It follows publication this morning of the Government’s 25 year Environment Plan. Theresa May revealed details of the long-awaited and wide-ranging 150-page strategy during a keynote speech in south-west London. Farmers manage […]

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10,000 football pitches worth of flower habitat, creating homes for wildlife, have been planted

Farming and the environment must go hand-in-hand and producing quality, home-grown food is critical to the future of the country, say’s the NFU.

It follows publication this morning of the Government’s 25 year Environment Plan. Theresa May revealed details of the long-awaited and wide-ranging 150-page strategy during a keynote speech in south-west London.

Farmers manage 70% of the nation’s iconic countryside and take their environmental responsibilities seriously. 10,000 football pitches worth of flower habitat, creating homes for wildlife, have been planted while more than 30,000km of hedgerows have been planted or restored by farmers.

The NFU says farming is in a unique position to deliver for the environment as long as there are productive and viable businesses – where food is at the heart.

NFU Vice President Guy Smith said: “Over the past four decades, farmers have carried out a huge amount of work to encourage wildlife, as well as benefitting the landscape, soil and water and reducing their impact on the climate.

“Farming also offers innovative solutions to wider environmental challenges. For instance the Government’s current concern with plastics highlighted by the BBC’s brilliant Blue Planet series could be met with substituting synthetic plastics with farm produced biodegradable starch-based packaging.

“But there must be a coherent approach. British farming has a unique role in producing a safe, affordable and high quality supply of food as well as protecting, maintaining and enhancing 70% of the nation’s iconic countryside.

“That only remains feasible, however, as long as farmers run sustainable and viable businesses. We provide the raw materials for a domestic food industry that employs 3.8m people and which, as the UK’s largest manufacturing sector, generates £112bn in value for the UK economy. This is why we welcomed the Secretary of State’s commitment last week to create a national food policy and his recognition that food is at the heart of viable farming businesses.

“It’s vital therefore that a holistic approach is taken and the environment plan must go hand-in-hand with a future food policy, where measures for protecting and enhancing the environment are joined up with policies to improve productivity and manage volatility to ensure that we have profitable, productive and progressive farm businesses post-Brexit.”

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Green gas can help Scotland meet energy goals https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11085-green-gas-can-help-scotland-meet-energy-goals/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11085-green-gas-can-help-scotland-meet-energy-goals/#respond Mon, 08 Jan 2018 16:27:55 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11085 Green gas can make a key contribution to meeting the goals set out in Scotland’s first ever Energy Strategy, according to the UK’s trade body for anaerobic digestion (AD). Charlotte Morton, Chief Executive of the Anaerobic Digestion & Bioresources Association (ADBA), said: “The Scottish Government has set itself ambitious but necessary targets for generating renewable […]

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Charlotte Morton

Green gas can make a key contribution to meeting the goals set out in Scotland’s first ever Energy Strategy, according to the UK’s trade body for anaerobic digestion (AD).

Charlotte Morton, Chief Executive of the Anaerobic Digestion & Bioresources Association (ADBA), said:

“The Scottish Government has set itself ambitious but necessary targets for generating renewable energy in its new Energy Strategy, and renewable heat and electricity produced through AD can make an important contribution to these goals, as well as reducing emissions from landfill, creating rural jobs, and helping to restore degraded soils.

“There are now over 50 operational AD plants spread across Scotland, recycling a range of wastes including animal slurries and manures, food waste, grass silage, sugar beet, and various grains and wheats from Scotland’s famous distilleries. With more than half of these plants commissioned within the last four years, farmers, businesses and government are increasingly seeing first-hand the multiple benefits that green gas delivers.”

AD is a technology that uses natural processes to recycle organic wastes and process purpose-grown energy crops into green gas that can then be used to produce renewable heat and power, low-carbon transport fuel, and nutrient-rich biofertiliser. AD is currently delivering 45 MWe of power and 11,000 m3/hr of heat in Scotland, with AD plants across the UK now having enough capacity to power over a million homes.

The Scottish Government’s Energy Strategy, the first of its kind in Scotland, sets a new target for at least 50% of all Scotland’s heat, transport, and electricity consumption to be supplied from renewable sources by 2030. The Strategy notes that biogas and biomethane produced through AD will have a role to play in helping to decarbonise Scotland’s energy system, and notes that existing biomethane sites in Scotland already produce enough gas to supply the equivalent of 85,000 homes.

Morton’s comments come ahead of the ADBA Scottish National Conference 2018, taking place in Glasgow on the 28th February. Last year’s conference was the first dedicated solely to the Scottish AD industry, and this year’s event will focus on AD’s potential contribution to business and farming in Scotland, with Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change, and Land Reform Roseanna Cunningham MSP giving the keynote presentation on Scotland’s proposed new Climate Change Bill.

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Gove: Tree planting rates have not been good enough https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/forestry/11077-gove-tree-planting-rates-have-not-been-good-enough/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/forestry/11077-gove-tree-planting-rates-have-not-been-good-enough/#respond Thu, 07 Dec 2017 10:18:19 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11077 Environment Secretary Michael Gove has given a strong indication that the Government’s 25 year plan for the environment, due in the New Year, will tackle the issue of woefully low tree planting. Speaking at the Woodland Trust’s parliamentary launch on Wednesday (December 6) of a series of essays outlining its vision for a post Brexit […]

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Agroforestry – image: Woodland Trust

Environment Secretary Michael Gove has given a strong indication that the Government’s 25 year plan for the environment, due in the New Year, will tackle the issue of woefully low tree planting.

Speaking at the Woodland Trust’s parliamentary launch on Wednesday (December 6) of a series of essays outlining its vision for a post Brexit integrated land use policy, the Secretary of State said:

“There is a responsibility for us to plant for the future. Compare us to the rest of Europe and the amount of woodland cover we have is pathetically small. The rates of tree planting in the UK, and England in particular, have not been good enough.

“There is a beauty and a poetry to a landscape decorated and indeed rooted with trees. If we have a care for our environment and if we have a view of this country that goes beyond the utilitarian and the practical, and which is viewed in a proper sense of beauty and romance and history and a desire to ensure future generations can enjoy what past generations have cherished, then we need to plant more trees.

“And with the publication of our 25 Year Plan for the Environment in the New Year, I hope we can say more on how we intend to meet that ambition. But we won’t be able to meet that ambition without the continued advocacy that comes from the Woodland Trust because it’s only by you holding us to the highest standards that we will make sure that the next generation inherit the woodlands, forests and trees they deserve.”

The speech was met with optimism by the Trust which has been calling for more action on tree planting rates and ancient woodland protection.

Its CEO Beccy Speight said 2017 has been a low point for the UK’s trees and woods:

“In England, new planting rates are at the lowest for a generation. At the same time, we see continued loss of existing woodland at an accelerated rate due to weak planning laws. The lack of effort to quantify these losses means England is surely slipping unnoticed into a state of deforestation. This is an appalling and dire position for a developed country to be in.

Mr Gove delivered his speech to a diverse gathering of MPs, ministers, foresters, farmers, businesses and academics at the charity’s parliamentary reception which aimed to share its vision of a greatly enhanced role for trees, woods and forests as the UK withdraws from the European Union and we disengage from the Common Agricultural Policy.

Ms Speight continued: “The aim of the event was to show that foresters, farmers and environmentalists are not at odds over what a post-CAP vision for land use in the UK could look like. A landscape rich in trees and woods has public health, environmental and economic benefits that were at best overlooked or at times discriminated against as a result of the complexities of the CAP.

“Withdrawal from the CAP and its oft-criticised and complex rule-book represents the biggest opportunity we’ve had in land use management for 40 years.”

Launched at the event was a series of essays from a range of authors on the topic, including Chair of the EFRA Select Committee Neil Parish MP, Shadow Environment Secretary Sue Hayman, think tank representatives, the forestry industry, landowners and academics.

Ms Speight added: “We’ve been banging the drum for the UK’s woods and trees and trees for 40 years and we know we are not on our own. It’s clear their value is increasingly recognised not just by conservationists but by those looking at the health and wellbeing of society, as well as those turning a profit too.”

In 2018 the charity hopes the Government will seize on opportunities to make things right.

“Change can be afoot if the Government grasps the opportunities presented in the form of post CAP legislation, the 25-year plan for the environment due in the New Year and the revision of the National Planning Policy Framework. The latter could see the closure of a loophole which currently allows a wide range of developments, from golf courses to motorway service stations, to be located in ancient woodlands with relative ease. “

With so much change on the horizon, and in light of Mr Gove’s words yesterday (December 6), Ms Speight says: “We’re hopeful. And we’re watching closely.”

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ADBA launches pioneering AD Certification Scheme at annual conference https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11081-adba-launches-pioneering-ad-certification-scheme-at-annual-conference/ https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/farming-environment/renewables/11081-adba-launches-pioneering-ad-certification-scheme-at-annual-conference/#respond Thu, 07 Dec 2017 00:01:29 +0000 https://www.farmingmonthly.co.uk/?p=11081 UK trade body the Anaerobic Digestion & Bioresources Association (ADBA) will today launch its pioneering AD Certification Scheme at the ADBA National Conference 2017 in London. The voluntary, industry-led scheme is designed to support operators of AD plants, including those based on farms, to improve their operational, environmental, and health and safety performance, in particular […]

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UK trade body the Anaerobic Digestion & Bioresources Association (ADBA) will today launch its pioneering AD Certification Scheme at the ADBA National Conference 2017 in London.

The voluntary, industry-led scheme is designed to support operators of AD plants, including those based on farms, to improve their operational, environmental, and health and safety performance, in particular in terms of energy generation and digestate quality.

ADBA has developed the scheme, working closely with industry stakeholders including operators, developers, consultants, suppliers, insurers, regulators and other trade bodies related to the sector, who have all voiced their support for such a certification process. The National Farmers’ Union (NFU) and CLA have contributed to ensuring the scheme is suitable for farmers who operate AD plants.

The scheme includes detailed assessment criteria that will allow third-party certification bodies to verify the achievement of good practice at AD plants, and is the most comprehensive of its type.

The scheme pilot was completed in September this year, with one on-farm plant, one food waste plant, and one on-site plant for a food manufacturer taking part.

ADBA Chief Executive Charlotte Morton said:

“Investing in an AD plant is a great way for farmers to diversify their income in the context of uncertainty over future support from government post Brexit. AD offers a treatment option for organic wastes such as manures, slurries, and vegetable off-cuts, producing on-site renewable heat and power, transport fuel for farm vehicles, and nutrient-rich biofertiliser. AD crops also give farmers a great option for crop rotation, helping to keep soils healthy and avoid the spread of blackgrass and nematodes.

“ADBA’s new AD Certification Scheme defines good practice and enables on-farm AD plants to be recognised as meeting it. A certification process is essential to ensuring that regulators, insurers and investors have confidence in the scheme, which offers AD operators a range of financial and regulatory benefits.

“We look forward to working with farmers on our AD Certification Scheme to support them in building and running their AD plants to high standards.”

Marie Fallon, Director of Regulated Industry at the Environment Agency, said:

“The Environment Agency welcomes the AD Certification Scheme as a positive intervention by the industry to improve performance in the anaerobic digestion sector. We share the determination in reducing pollution incidents which is a risk to the reputation of the industry. We will continue to work with ADBA to share evidence and information to achieving that goal.”

Rick Brunt, Head of Vulnerable Workers, Agriculture, Waste and Recycling Unit at the Health & Safety Executive, said:

“Seeing ADBA’s AD Certification Scheme progress to the next stage is an excellent example of the industry working together driving improvement of its own standards and expectations. It clearly demonstrates what can be achieved through the collaboration of a diverse range of organisations spanning operators, insurers and regulators, and has resulted in a scheme that will not only improve health and safety but also environmental and operational performance. I hope that we will see the remainder of the AD industry embracing the scheme with the same level of enthusiasm as those that have worked on its development.”

Jonathan Scurlock, Chief Adviser on Renewable Energy and Climate Change at the NFU, said:

“The NFU recognises the unique role that AD can play in generating on-farm energy while helping to improve nutrient and soil management. The ADBA AD Certification Scheme is an important tool in helping operators of on-farm AD plants meet high environmental, health and safety, and operational standards.  It has been great to see a wide variety of stakeholders coming together to develop voluntary accreditation of good practice, helping to raise confidence and drive better performance in what is an important industry for British farmers.”

Simon Blades, AD Manager at Beeswax Dyson Farming, one of the operators involved in the pilot phase of the scheme, said:

“At Beeswax Dyson Farming we believe the ADBA AD Certification Scheme will help AD owners and operators identify key areas for improvement. It will enable them to maintain safety and operational standards, which in turn will help improve the industry as a whole. Being involved in the pilot scheme and mock assessment has helped our business identify areas for improvement.”

Stefan Jimenez Wisler, Land Use Policy Adviser at the CLA, said:

“The CLA is pleased to see the launch of ADBA’s AD Certification Scheme. AD is an important tool for mitigating greenhouse gas emissions, driving more efficient resource use and enabling a range of other on-farm environmental benefits.

“This new certification scheme sets out good practice and allows on-farm AD plants to be recognised for meeting it. This will crucially provide operators, regulators and the public with the confidence to support AD for the financial and environmental benefits it can provide.”

Carl Gurney, Renewable Energy Director at insurance brokers Jelf, said:

“It has been fantastic to be part of this project for the last two years, seeing stakeholders coming together with the same common goal to improve standards in this brilliant sector. I would implore all operators to look to undertake this process as I am confident this will only assist in improving their plant and mitigating any losses or incidents. This coupled with tangible insurance benefits in terms of cover and pricing only adds to the reasons why this should be undertaken. Having a standard to reach truly benefits the wider industry, which will only assist in giving confidence to regulators and investors. This in turn will hopefully lead to a more hands-off approach, continuity in regulator assessments and continued investment which, finally, means sector growth. This is a hugely positive move for the AD sector and I urge those interested to get involved.”

Phil Gerrard, Chief Executive at Privilege Finance, said:

“Privilege specialises in providing finance for AD projects. We’re very keen to see improvements in both environmental and health and safety risk management at AD plants, and the ability to easily understand the level of risk and performance of these plants through an independent accreditation process is incredibly helpful.

“The AD Certification Scheme provides an independent process for operators to demonstrate their credibility when seeking finance, supporting them in securing the optimum terms in the marketplace.”

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