The NFU has set the ambitious goal of reaching net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across the whole of agriculture in England and Wales by 2040. This is our contribution to the UK’s ambition of net zero by 2050. Agriculture is uniquely placed to be part of the solution, as both an emissions source and a sink. As farmers we have a special responsibility to protect carbon reserves already in our soils and vegetation. But we must and we can do more. We know emissions from UK farms presently amount to 45.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent a year – about onetenth of UK GHG emissions. But in stark contrast to the rest of the economy only 10 per cent of this is CO2. Around 40% is nitrous dioxide (N2O) and 50% is methane (CH4). The NFU’s assessment is that we can only deliver net zero if we act across a range of internationally recognised inventories. Based upon the latest scienti c evidence, our approach has been discussed with the Committee on Climate Change, so we believe our aim is challenging, but attainable, given the right incentives.
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