Capitalising on Natural Capital
In 2019, Strutt & Parker instigated one of the first natural capital assessments on The Clifton Castle Estate.
A 6.5k acre mixed Yorkshire estate that included not only grazing and arable for the in-hand farm, but tenanted farms, woodland, moorland and even quarries.
Working with environmental economics consultancy, eftec, we helped develop a blueprint for the estate’s future in terms of its natural capital assets and provided a model for what could be done to improve their environmental footprint and assess the impact of both current and future land management practices.
The report is just the start as we now work with the estate’s owner and tenant farmers to develop and implement initiatives that will increasingly enhance and in time, monetise their natural capital and reduce the estate’s carbon footprint. Early examples include the introduction of a new environmental stewardship programme with pilot schemes around new crop rotations, including fallow options to reduce both the impact and improve soil and organic matter on poorer land.
Across the wider estate, initiatives such as native tree planting and a scheme to ‘rewet the wet’ peatland through a £600,000 grant to restore previously drained peatlands are now underway.
As the farming world awaits the arrival of ELMs, the estate is preparing for the next chapter, facing the realities of climate change head on, developing carbon offsetting schemes and putting sustainable, but still profitable, farming at the heart of all that they do.