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Results-Based Agri-environment Schemes - a new platform

Farmers in the Burren are rewarded for conservation results on orchid-rich dry calcareous grasslands

On 23 September over 90 farmers, farm advisors, ecologists, funding agencies and policy experts from 22 Member States, came together in Brussels to discuss results-based agri-environment payment schemes (RBAPS) at a conference organised by the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), with EFNCP as one of several partner organisations.

Participants explored the latest thinking in terms of scheme design and implementation, how to set appropriate objectives, calculate payment rates and engage farmers. And a new web based platform and Blog were launched on the European Commission's website to serve the growing interest in results-based schemes, improve understanding and share best practice. The platform includes videos explaining several schemes, such as this one in France.

The platform, blog and conference form part of a larger research project commissioned by DG Environment on behalf of the European Parliament. The project is reviewing existing results-based schemes in EU and EFTA countries, identifying issues and best practice guidance to be shared through the web based platform and blog. This information will take the form of an inventory of existing schemes, videos, a free downloadable handbook, as well as expert articles and case studies. The Blog aims to build a community of practice to share experiences and know-how about RBAPS.

Goats achieving a result - clearing a RAPCA firebreak in Andalucía

Goats achieving a result - clearing a RAPCA firebreak in Andalucía

Across Europe, agri-environment schemes provide important sources of funding to farmers to protect wildlife, species and habitats on agricultural land. Most agri-environment schemes pay farmers for carrying out particular activities, but results-based schemes focus on rewarding farmers for the outcomes that are achieved. This gives farmers the flexibility to use their own knowledge and experience to manage land in a way that benefits biodiversity, rather than being tied to top-down prescriptions.

Not all results-based schemes are funded under the EU's agri-environment measure, and not all schemes are targeted exclusively on biodiversity results. Two different schemes that involve EFNCP partners are the Burren Farming for Conservation Programme presented on this video and the Red de Areas Pasto-Cortafuegos de Andalucia for reducing wildfire risks through livestock grazing.

The RBAPS project is carried out by the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), with experts from EFNCP, the Institute for Agro-ecology and Biodiversity (IFAB), Applications des Sciences de l'Action (AScA), the Istituto Nazionale di Economia Agraria (INEA), the University of Helsinki, the Association Européenne pour l'Information sur le Développement Local (AEIDL), and individual experts, Jaroslav Pražan, Natacha Yellachich and Tim Hudson.

More information:

  • For more information about the project, contact Ben Allen (ballen@ieep.eu)
  • Read more on the platform
  • Share your thoughts on the blog
  • Or follow us on Twitter
  • Result-based agri-environment schemes - overview:

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European Forum on Nature Conservation and Pastoralism
Online: http://www.efncp.org/news/news20141204.php
Date: 2017/10/20
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