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SECTOR GROUP: Farming and other Land use

farming and other land use

Emissions from Farming and other Land Use include sources which emit carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases, and sinks which absorb carbon dioxide. In Cumbria, sources are estimated to be around  2.5 MtCO2 equivalent, and sinks are estimated to absorb around 0.6MtCO2. As well as rapidly reducing emissions from farming and other land use by 2037, sinks will need to absorb much more carbon dioxide.

[Figures sourced from updated carbon baseline]

Under-pinned by data from Cumbria’s Carbon Baseline Report, the Farming and other Land Use sector group has been formed  to create and steer Emissions Reduction Action Plans, in order to achieve Cumbria’s ambition of becoming carbon net-zero by 2037. 


CumbriaWoodlands (1)

The Farming and other Land Use sector group has an important role to play here in Cumbria. We already know that agriculture is a significant contributor to global climate change and in this large, rural county, it is exacerbated by the substantial demand on land use such as; agriculture, housing, tourism, industry transport and nature conservation. 

The impacts of climate change and the extreme weather conditions associated with it are increasingly felt in Cumbria, a county that already experiences harsh climatic conditions. Combined with intensive land use activities it results in the loss of natural habitats, destruction of woodlands and degradation of our peatlands. 

Cumbria has been a farming county for around 7,000 years  and as such  is woven into the lives of generations of people. But modern farming practices which have to work to the demands of the market, cause a range of damaging emissions.

Although agriculture is very susceptible to the impacts of climate change, it plays a vital role in national food security and environmental land stewardship. 

Responding to the emissions related to farming and other land use will unlock huge benefits. By preserving and managing natural sequestration systems such as; peatlands, lakes, woodlands, rivers, marshes and uplands this will help mitigate the damaging effects of climate change by strengthening nature’s own weather defences; reducing flood risk, providing shade and improving water quality.  

In addition to being home to roughly 500,000 residents, Cumbria attracts over 11 million visitors every year. Holidaymakers flock to the National Park to enjoy its outstanding natural beauty. By protecting our natural assets and adopting greener farming practices, we can promote sustainable tourism and leisure activities increasing health and wellbeing for all.


Sector group progress update

Farm visit for catering students – a blog!

Fellfoot Forward trainee, Dylan Hardy offers his support to a Fellfoot farm visit in October by Level 3 Catering Students from Kendal College as part of the Zero Carbon Cumbria Low Carbon Food Programme. In October Level 3 students from Kendal Catering College visited High Hall Farm in Armathwaite for

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What emissions are in scope?

On farm emissions

This area includes all emissions from soil and grass management.

Farm supply chains

All emissions associated with farm supply chains.


This area of scope examines the emissions of forestry activities including agroforestry.


Promoting the natural sequestration potential. Including the planting and management of woodlands.


Including peatland restoration.

Other land use

Including wetlands, nature conservation and emissions from land use supply chains.

Working towards net zero: land use and farming news from around Cumbria

Solar Farm Site to go ahead in Barrow

A 2MW solar farm on council owned land at Sandscale Park, Barrow, has been approved this week. The electricity generated will be enough for approximately 730 homes a year,  and is expected save about 607 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent each year.  Part of this development also includes a biodiversity

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Blog: Mixed Farming Systems for the Future

 A ZCCP Farm and Other Land Use Sector Group Blog by Roe Baker In early July I visited Newcastle University’s Nafferton Farm in Northumberland to look at the innovative trials and testing that the University is carrying out all of which are important in the mitigation of CO2e emissions, and

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Emissions sector group meeting

First sector group meeting bodes well for future progress

Four emissions sector groups consisting of 45 members in total from diverse Cumbrian organisations and businesses, met in-person on the 18th April to focus on the main sources of greenhouse gas emissions in Cumbria. Informed by data on Cumbria’s controllable greenhouse gas emissions, the sector groups will address emissions from

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Youth Climate Summit 2023

This year’s Youth Climate Summit took place in Kendal. The young people at the summit were asked about solutions and barriers for each of the sector group areas. Watch their thoughts on ‘farming and other land use’ below.

In the news:

How could we reach net zero?

To tackle Cumbria’s ambitious target of reaching net-zero by 2037, the Farming and other Land Use sector group plays an integral role.

To help achieve this, some suggested Priority Emission Reduction Actions (PERAs) have been identified, based on extensive research across a broad evidence base ranging from IPCC and UK Government reports to emissions data from Cumbria’s carbon baseline report.

These PERAs offer a key starting point from which the Farming and other Land Use sector group can develop detailed Emissions Reduction Action Plans leading to rapid countywide action.

 The suggested PERA’s  for the Farming and other Land Use sector group are focussed on the following areas:


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