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Common Agricultural Policy

Environment Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 26th June 2012.

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Photo of Zac Goldsmith Zac Goldsmith Conservative, Richmond Park

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether farmers will be able to receive payment for ecosystem services under the Common Agricultural Policy Scheme.

Photo of James Paice James Paice The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Pillar two of the common agricultural policy provides funding for environmental outcomes through environmental stewardship. Environmental stewardship, as a mechanism for paying those who deliver a wide range of environmental outcomes from the farmed environment, can be considered a Payment for Ecosystem Services scheme, with Government effectively purchasing public benefits on behalf of a large number of beneficiaries, for example, relating to landscape and biodiversity. The Government are committed to encouraging Payments for Ecosystem Services pilots across a broad spectrum of nature's services and beneficiaries. The Government are in favour of a greener CAP, with a greater proportion spent on public goods, including improved environmental outcomes such as supporting biodiversity and climate mitigation, and will be seeking to secure this in the CAP Reform negotiations.

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