Lesley Griffiths MS, Minister for Rural Affairs and North Wales, and Trefnydd
Further to my statement of 10 October 2023, regulations to implement an Enhanced Nutrient Management approach have today been laid before the Senedd.
Through the Co-operation Agreement with Plaid Cymru, we committed to working with the farming community in the deployment of the Water Resources (Control of Agricultural Pollution) (Wales) Regulations 2021, to improve water and air quality, taking an approach targeted at those activities known to cause pollution. On 5 October 2022, I issued a Written Statement on the package of measures the Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru agreed in order to progress this commitment.
As part of this package of measures, on 10 October 2023, I published a summary of responses following the consultation on support and evidence for proposals for a time-limited licence scheme. Alongside this, I announced my intention to bring forward regulations before the end of November to implement an Enhanced Nutrient Management approach from 1 January to 31 December 2024. This relates only to the total nitrogen limit from livestock manures for the whole holding. All other measures contained within the regulations remain either in force or subject to the relevant transition period and are not impacted by the Enhanced Nutrient Management approach.
The regulations laid before the Senedd today set out the arrangements for farms with 80% or more grassland to apply up to 250kg/ha nitrogen from livestock manures during 2024.
Farms taking up this arrangement in 2024 must notify and send the supporting evidence to NRW and adhere to a set of strict environmental measures and additional controls. These measures will increase the level of environmental protection afforded by the regulations and ensure environmental impacts of the Enhanced Nutrient Management approach are minimised.
Detailed guidance for the Enhanced Nutrient Management approach will be available before the Christmas Recess.
In making this announcement today, I also reiterate our continued commitment, under the Co-operation Agreement, to significantly reduce pollution from agricultural activities, in partnership with the farming community to achieve lasting results. I continue to welcome engagement from the sector on the deployment of the regulations.