Food, Farming and Countryside Commission

Land Unlocked

Real action for the real world

Land, and land use, is at the heart of so many critical choices ahead of us and holds the key to unlocking multiple solutions.

Here, we are focussing on land and its relationship to three interconnected COP26 themes: Nature, Finance and Adaptation. Scroll down to see more or click (right) to read, watch and listen to conversations, evidence and opinions about the actions needed to create a better future for all.

Imagine a future

Within reach is a future where everyone can live healthy fulfilling lives, nature is thriving across the whole landscape and food is sustainably produced, nutritious and affordable. It is a future where government policies, businesses and communities work together and flourish in a fair and just economy. And it is a future, imagined in the Sustainable Development Goals, to which governments around the world have already committed.

Agroecology (a science, a movement and a practice, for transforming food farming and land use) has the potential to be a fair and plausible path to this future.

Skilled green jobs

Farms are an integral part of community life, providing skilled and valued green jobs, and opportunities for cooperating, experimenting and innovating for public benefits.

A countryside for all

A countryside that works for everyone - for nature, people, climate.

Regenerative practices

Regenerative practices are the norm including diverse crop rotations and grasslands, mob grazing livestock, agroforestry, and hedges, woodlands, wetlands, & protected habitats are visible everywhere.

Fresh, healthy, local food

Fresh, healthy, local food is easily and widely available to all, from shops, community supported agriculture, farmers markers, community orchards and allotments.

Healthy soils

Soils are healthy - diverse and rich in life, sequestering carbon from the atmosphere.

Nature restored

Wildlife has recovered and grown, there is more space for nature and seas, and rivers are rich with biodiversity.

Farms are an integral part of community life, providing skilled and valued green jobs, and opportunities for cooperating, experimenting and innovating for public benefits.

A countryside that works for everyone - for nature, people, climate.

Regenerative practices are the norm including diverse crop rotations and grasslands, mob grazing livestock, agroforestry, and hedges, woodlands, wetlands, & protected habitats are visible everywhere.

Fresh, healthy, local food is easily and widely available to all, from shops, community supported agriculture, farmers markers, community orchards and allotments.

Soils are healthy - diverse and rich in life, sequestering carbon from the atmosphere.

Wildlife has recovered and grown, there is more space for nature and seas, and rivers are rich with biodiversity.

A pathway to a brighter future

The COP26 president has set out four clear goals - driving down emissions, protecting people and nature, mobilising finance, and improving collaboration at all levels. Below, we focus on the COP26 themes of nature, finance and adaptation and look at how they, along with the president's priorities, suggest clear actions for governments, business and civil society.

Nature

Nature-based solutions are “actions to protect, sustainably use, manage and restore natural or modified ecosystems, which address societal challenges, effectively and adaptively, providing human well-being and biodiversity benefits”. Agroecology meets that definition and shares many principles. Its strength is that it helps address many challenges, identified in the SDGs, including providing enough healthy food for all. And this food is sustainably produced by viable businesses who are restoring nature and acting on the climate emergency.

Finance

Aligning public and private finance for a rapid and just transition is at the core of serious climate actions. The market alone may not be capable of making the bold, fair and transformative moves, away from the old, extractive and inequitable industries and towards more just and sustainable economy. Governments acknowledge this, having kickstarted transitions to cleaner energy, housing and transport in the past. Now, the same shift is needed in agriculture, to help farmers and growers move rapidly towards more regenerative practices, backed by patient and purposeful finance, with government policies that set out clear ambition and direction for the sector.

Adaptation

The climate is already changing. Climate shocks are becoming more frequent, with serious impacts for farmers and growers, and for communities at risk of flooding and droughts. Alongside collaborative international and national actions, communities need the tools and resources to shape the locally-led actions that work best for them. Yet land is often the silent partner in these climate conversations. With the right approaches and resources, local community knowledge of land and landscapes can help create plans which support a thriving food and farming sector (led by agroecological principles) and give agency back to those on the front lines of climate change.

Agroecology is the key to:

Feeding a future UK

77.5m people

A healthy, affordable diet

Doubling farmland for nature

603,000 hectares

For biodiversity gain

Source: Farming for change

Reducing GHG emissions

by over 38%

to meet net zero

Land Unlocked:
Conversations

Read, watch and listen to all the conversations about Nature, Finance and Adaptation

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