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Why restoration of floodplain meadows should be part of Michael Gove’s solution for agriculture

We have long promoted floodplain meadows as productive agricultural systems that deliver all the public goods and services that society could hope for.

Species-rich floodplain meadows and associated habitats, such as wet woodland and fen meadows, are important natural assets that give us much greater resilience to the effects of our changing climate.  They are able to store and cleanse flood waters, sequester carbon, and trap and process nutrients and sediments.  They provide a rich rural landscape, support a diversity of wildlife and have a critical role to play in the conservation of our natural and social heritage. Yet they are systems that continue to be managed as part of an agricultural business, delivering productive hay crops and nutritious grazing with minimal inputs.

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