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Soils

Soil is a precious resource and to lose it would be detrimental to the farming landscape in years to come. Soil erosion is a natural process, however, it is exacerbated by modern day farming methods.

The most significant threat facing our soils is from erosion by wind and water. Around 2.2 million tonnes of topsoil is eroded annually in the UK, significantly affecting the productivity of soils and impacting on water quality and aquatic ecosystems through the silting up of watercourses. The total cost of soil erosion is currently estimated at around £45 million per annum including £9 million in lost production (Safeguarding our soils, a strategy for England, Defra, 2009).

We need to find out why some of our farmers do not see soil erosion as an issue, is it lack of knowledge or awareness? Or is it a choice? Without soil there will not be any arable farming.

The Topsoils project aims to take the first step in working with farmers in the catchment to understand what can be done to protect groundwaters further.

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We also work with Verdesian to limit nutrient loss into surface and groundwater whilst producing high yield crops.

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