Guest blog by Arfon Williams, Head of Land and Seas Policy, RSPB Cymru

RSPB Cymru views the creation of a new Welsh Agriculture Act and Sustainable Farming Scheme as a unique opportunity to use taxpayers’ money to establish sustainable farming that helps tackle the nature and climate emergency. As such we welcome Welsh Government’s proposals that the new scheme will prioritise these outcomes, by paying farmers for the delivery of environmental enhancements, as well as promoting sustainable food production.

Cattle grazing at RSPB Ynys-hir Nature Reserve . Image (c) Eleanor Bentall (

We believe the Act and Sustainable Farming Scheme can play a huge role in:

  • Restoring biodiversity by securing the sustainable management of natural resources, as required by the Environment (Wales) Act 2016 and Welsh Government’s Natural Resources Policy
  • Securing environmental public goods essential to our well-being and that of future-generations, as required by the Well-being of Future Generation (Wales) Act 2015.
  • Helping tackle climate change through increased farm efficiencies and the effective use of nature-based solutions.
  • Promoting sustainable food productions and fair supply chains that fully reward farmers and improve the resilience of farming.

Welsh Government intends opening its new scheme in 2025 and we will continue to work with Government to secure the most effective scheme possible. This includes advocating the Fair to Nature Standard as the basis of the new Sustainable Farming Scheme.

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