James Rebanks - Save British farming

How to save British farming (and the countryside)

James Rebanks, Lake District farmer and author of 'The Shepherd's Life'  and a new book  'English Pastoral'writes about how to combine productive and "regenerative" farming with landscape and species biodiversity.

From the Unherd website         September 2020

"As a farmer I've come to accept that our impact on nature is often destructive, but saving the landscape won't be cheap.

"The RSPB’s State of Nature report paints a gloomy picture of disappearing wildlife in our overwhelmingly farmed landscapes. Beloved species like curlews, yellowhammers, or hedgehogs, common as recently as my childhood, are disappearing or declining.  The scientific consensus is that the rapid and ongoing intensification of agriculture has made our landscapes more monocultural, and sterile, with less habitats and less food for the things that once shared it with us.

"We could have a lively debate about who’s fault the intensification of farming was — and I might argue it was driven by the demand for cheap food, the overweening power of a handful of food industry corporations, poor public policy, disruptive chemical and engineering technologies that emerged in the post war period, and which are still intensifying field work, and lastly the societal belief that farming’s job was solely to produce ever cheaper food — but I’m less interested in haggling over blame, and much more interested in what I can practically do about this mess on our land."


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