New Code of Good Agricultural Practice (COGAP)
DEFRA has produced an updated Code of Good Practice for Reducing Ammonia Emissions in collaboration with the farming industry. DEFRA says farming is responsible for 88% of all UK ammonia gas emissions, which can combine with other pollutants to form particulates harmful to human health. The new Code explains the practical steps farmers, growers, land managers, advisors and contractors in England can take to minimise ammonia emissions from the storage and application of organic manures, the application of manufactured fertiliser, and through modifications to livestock diet and housing.
In September DEFRA announced that the Catchment Sensitive Farming programme, which is a partnership between DEFRA, the Environment Agency and Natural England, will support farmers to take action to reduce these emissions in line with the new Code. Under this programme farmers will be given free advice under a £3m government scheme to help reduce ammonia emissions from agriculture, and a team of specialists will be available to work with farmers to implement the measures set out in the Code. The team can provide training events, tailored advice, individual farm visits and support with grant applications, all funded by the programme. DEFRA have published a list of Catchment Sensitive Farming officers to enable those interested in finding out more to contact them.