Oxford Long-Term Ecology Lab

Long-Term Ecology, Biodiversity Conservation, and Environmental Stewardship Technologies


Farmers in the River Tone and River Parrett catchments within Somerset, UK can bid online for public money for works to help stop flooding in a new trial coordinated by the Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group SouthWest (FWAG), the Environment Agency, and Natural England.  The trial, which will run from July 23rd until Sunday, August 12th,  is of an innovative new online auction tool for land management measures, called NaturEtrade NFM. Funding is available for six natural flood management measures.

  • maize management
  • grassland sub-soiling
  • leaky structures
  • hedge planting
  • soil bunds and leaky ponds
  • hedge planting on bunds

If the auction is successful, it will help to shape future support for sustainable farming and food production. It is designed to test a more flexible and farmer-driven approach to delivering outcomes of public benefit, such as cleaner water, more sustainable soils, increased biodiversity, and carbon storage. NaturEtrade NFM is a simple online auction tool, on which farmers and land managers can bid for funding to deliver a selection of Natural Flood Management (NFM) measures. It will allow farmers to select locations on their farm where they would like to implement these measures, and will allow them to bid an amount it would cost for them to provide these measures. The most competitive bids will receive funding from Somerset Rivers Authority.

The initiative has built on developments and thinking in NaturEtrade, a LIFE+ funded project which has been running in OxLEL since 2012.

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