Lib Dems win support for farmers to set up small-scale renewable energy production on their land
Cross-party support has been secured by the Welsh Liberal Democrats for an amendment to the Welsh Agriculture Bill which will ensure government support to farmers who are looking to establish small-scale renewable energy production on their land
The amendment proposed by Liberal Democrats leader Jane Dodds will also support the industry in making changes to increase energy efficiency in their businesses.
In recent years there has been an increase in demand from farmers seeking to diversify their operations and set up small-scale renewable energy production on their land.
Many were disappointed that a previous Welsh Government scheme to incentivise small-scale hydropower on private land was discontinued by the Welsh Government in 2021.
“Our local farmers feed the nation but also act as guardians of our land, protecting and maintaining the environment and nature contained within it. It is only right that we support them in their efforts to provide renewable energy and diversify their operations,” Jane Dodds said.
“The Welsh Agriculture Bill as a whole, is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to effect positive change for our world-class agricultural sector, helping our farmers to do what they do best and to support the links between our farmers, their local communities, and our natural environment.
“My amendment enables the Welsh Government to support farmers across Wales to adopt and adapt to manage energy effectively, including by adopting energy efficiency and energy-saving practices, and generating renewable energy on their land.
“We need to support our local farmers in taking actions that encourage and support their business resilience and support an environment of innovation. Supporting these businesses to adopt innovative practices while maintaining the traditional ways of farming which have been an important part of Wales for generations is crucial for keeping farmers on the land now and in the future.
“This is why my amendment specifically focuses specifically on keeping farmers on our land and helping them diversify rather than promoting the sale of family farms to large corporations for wind or solar farming.
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.
A very sensible approach. Diolch Jane!
Just part of a policy to stop sales of farmland to fast-buck city investors for “solar farms”. Combining with agriculture and wildlife management via agrivoltaics should take priority.