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Land: Nature Conservation

Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN 141109, tabled on 16 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate he has made of the amount of land that will be taken out of agricultural production as a result of schemes and plans for wilding over the next two years.

Answered on

24 March 2022

Wilding or re-wilding is the restoration of ecosystems to the point where they are more regulated by natural processes.

Although appropriate only in certain situations, this is something the Government is already supporting through projects such as peatland restoration funding or agri-environment schemes. Defra is also in the process of reviewing and developing an approach to rewilding that takes into account environmental and land use priorities. We will initiate ten Landscape Recovery projects between 2022 and 2024 that will, among other things, help restore wilder landscapes. The focus of these will be on large-scale sites where there are opportunities to significantly enhance the landscape to deliver a wide range of environmental outcomes.

Over the next two years it is expected that the amount of land moving from agriculture production into wilding projects will have no substantive impact on food production.