How can habitat creation help landowners and farmers to diversify their income?
As various agri-environmental schemes and subsidies, traditionally funded through the European Union, wind-up, farming and the management of land is at a transitional stage in its evolution.
With this in mind, many farmers and landowners are looking at new ways to diversify their income streams and plug the subsidy gap. Habitat Banks are one such option, measuring up favourably to current and projected agri-schemes.
How does a Habitat Bank help me replace my farm subsidy?
We are the only company in the UK offering to fully-fund the leasing of land for biodiversity conservation through Habitat Bank creation. We are backed by a funding partner, and this means we can guarantee an income for a minimum 30 year term which starts as soon as the lease is signed.
This income comes through leasing land from you as well as paying you to manage the Habitat Bank over the 30 year term, on our behalf. We want to work closely with you to develop a management plan that is bespoke to your land and that works for you and for nature.
What are the benefits to me of habitat creation?
There are lots of benefits. It allows you to guarantee your income for a 30 year period. It spreads your risk across your business, providing you with an alternative income stream to farm subsidies. It does not require costly inputs such as fertilizer - in fact, we fund all the inputs, for example cultivating the land, planting and fencing, to get the Habitat Bank off the ground.
Habitat creation means you are also supporting the vital restoration of our biodiverse landscape, vital to tackling the existential threat to our planet.
What sort of land are you looking for?
We consider all types of land, including currently unproductive areas, old pasture, scrubland as well as low-yield land. This is across the acreage and doesn’t have to be in one block. We are typically looking for small parcels of land, totalling between 10-100 hectares.
What help do you give to set up and manage a Habitat Bank?
This is done on a bespoke basis, there is no ‘one size fits all’. Our experienced team of ecologists will meet on your land for an on-site review to discuss the possibilities with you.
The aim is for us to form a close working relationship with you as a landowner who will create the habitat on the leased land on behalf of Environment Bank. This is most likely to be you, as the landowner, working your own land, but may be an associated company of yours or a third party, depending on the circumstances in each case. Regardless, our ecologists will fully support all individuals involved, including the type of planting and management of the Habitat Bank throughout the full term.
How do I get paid?
Income will be broken down between a lease payment for the land and a habitat management payment. Payments will increase with inflation to a capped amount and will be made annually with the first year's upfront. Unlike other schemes, payments will start immediately on signing and we will also pay you a fee to welcome you to Environment Bank.
What about carbon?
Habitat Banks are by nature incredibly efficient at absorbing and storing carbon; however, we are focused on offsetting biodiversity and not carbon. We will therefore sell sequestered carbon from the Habitat Bank back to you for a nominal fee allowing you to offset against your farming and/or business operations.
WHAT ARE YOU HABITAT OPTIONS?
Find out the habitat options for your land and the income you could generate by registering your land or calling our team on 01904 202 990.