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What Are Farming Rules For Water?

Agricultural activities affect water quality, including nitrate pollution that can harm drinking water supplies and aquatic ecosystems. The government works with farmers to implement best management practices to minimise impacts from these sources of water quality concern.

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Farming Rules for Water were introduced on 2nd April 2018. Further challenges were made against the Environment Agency’s Regulatory Position Statement 252 “Spreading manure on agricultural land” which gave farmers permission, in effect, to spread chicken manure and cattle slurry on their fields where it is not needed as a fertiliser. This was an issue of serious agricultural pollution of rivers and is the biggest cause of the failure of rivers to achieve good ecological status. Find out more about Nutrient Management Planning by visiting a site like https://4rreassurance.co.uk/nutrient-management-planning/

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In general, the proposed standards require that farmers manage the water used for harvesting, packing, and holding produce to ensure it remains safe and of adequate sanitary quality. This includes visually monitoring the water for build-up of organic material and ensuring the temperature of the water is appropriate for use. Farmers must also document that they have implemented measures to minimise the contamination of covered produce with microorganisms from the water used on the farm.

In addition to these recordkeeping requirements, farmers may need a permit for some water withdrawals from surface or groundwater systems. However, most routine ongoing farming activities, and silviculture require regulation where they involve discharges into wetlands, streams, rivers, or other waters of the United Kingdom.


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