Catchment Sensitive Farming (CSF) Evaluation

Catchment Sensitive Farming (CSF)  is a proactive approach to diffuse pollution.  Reducing agricultural sources of pollution within river catchments through land management practices ensures that emissions to water are consistent with ecological requirements.

The first five years of the England Catchment Sensitive Farming Delivery Initiative (ECSFDI) have been evaluated and there is clear evidence to demonstrate that the initiative has met its primary objectives to:

– increase awareness amongst rural land managers and stakeholders of the impact of diffuse water pollution from agriculture.

– improve soil and land management practices amongst farmers within Priority Catchments.

-reduce the pollution of water caused by farming within Priority Catchments.


The evaluation of the first 5 years of CSF shows that:

– CSF advice has been delivered to over 9,000 farms covering an area of 1.3 million hectares. This represents 17 per cent of all farm holdings within Priority Catchments (38 per cent by area) and 45 per cent within targeted sub-catchments (62 per cent by area).

– 64 per cent of farms have implemented more than half of the specific recommendations to reduce water pollution – in total 93,000 recommendations were made.

– monitored pollutant levels have reduced by up to 3o per cent.

The results of the evaluation are outlined in a high level summary report: (149kb) and a detailed Phase 1 & 2 Evaluation Report: (5.92mb).

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