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The Nitrate Sensitive Areas Regulations 1994

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Regulation 2(1)

SCHEDULE 1NITRATE SENSITIVE AREAS

Column (1)Column (2)
Name of Nitrate Sensitive AreaMap Number
North Lincolnshire Wolds1
Pollington2
Hatfield3
Carlton4
North Newbald5
Springwells6
North Nottinghamshire7
Amen Corner8
Far Baulker9
Aswarby10
Sheriffhales11
Grindle Forge12
Bednall13
Hopwas14
Oakeley Farm15
Kinver16
Hagley17
Bromsberrow18
Duckaller19
Sedgeford20
Slip End21
Birchmoor22

Regulation 7(a)

SCHEDULE 2REQUIREMENTS UNDER ALL SCHEMES

The requirements referred to in regulation 7(a) are—

(1) the farmer shall not in any period of 12 months apply organic nitrogen fertiliser in excess of the quantity which would result in the application to the land of 250 kilograms of nitrogen per hectare;

(2) the farmer shall not apply any organic nitrogen fertiliser within 50 metres of a spring, well or borehole that supplies water for human consumption or for use in a dairy, or within 10 metres of any watercourse.

Regulation 7(b)(i)

SCHEDULE 3REQUIREMENTS UNDER THE BASIC SCHEME

The requirements referred to in regulation 7(b)(i) are—

(1) the farmer shall not apply any inorganic nitrogen fertiliser between 15th August in one year and 1st February in the following year. The farmer shall not apply slurry or poultry manure between 1st July and 1st December in any year;

(2) the farmer shall not apply organic nitrogen fertiliser unless it has been produced in the nitrate sensitive area or on the holding subject to undertakings under these Regulations;

(3) where a crop is harvested before 15th October in any year—

(i)the farmer shall establish autumn sown cereals, autumn sown oilseed rape or a mixture thereof by 15th October in that year; or

(ii)if it is not intended to sow the next crop before 1st January in the following year, the farmer shall sow a cover crop as soon after harvesting as soil conditions allow;

(4) the farmer shall not sow a cover crop which is of the same crop as that harvested except where previously approved by the Minister in writing;

(5) the farmer shall not remove any cover crop whether by mechanical cultivation, herbicides or by grazing—

(i)before 1st February in the year after its establishment if the soil is sandy; or

(ii)before 1st December in the year in which it was established if the soil is not sandy;

unless the next crop is sown within four weeks of the removal of the cover crop;

(6) the farmer shall not house any animals or poultry, or other birds kept for commercial purposes, on the land;

(7) the farmer shall not provide any supplementary feed for animals grazing crops or cover crops on the land;

(8) the farmer shall not convert permanent grassland in the nitrate sensitive area to arable land unless that grassland is a grass ley in arable rotation;

(9) the farmer shall keep adequate records in a form approved by the Minister of the amount of all applications of nitrogen fertiliser; the dates when such fertiliser was applied; and the areas of the land and the crop to which application was made;

(10) the farmer shall not damage, destroy or remove stockproof walls, hedges, field trees, hedgerow trees, lakes, ponds or streams or other watercourses on or bordering the land except with the previous consent in writing of the Minister;

(11) the farmer shall not damage, destroy or remove any traditional weatherproof farm buildings or features of historical or archaeological interest or value except with the previous consent in writing of the Minister;

(12) the farmer shall comply with the requirements specified in Option A or Option B set out below.

Option A—Low nitrogen arable cropping (restricted rotation)

(i)The farmer shall not in any period of 12 months apply nitrogen fertiliser in excess of the quantity which would result in the application to the land of 150 kilograms of nitrogen per hectare or in excess of the crop requirement where that is less (and for this purpose the nitrogen content of organic nitrogen fertiliser shall be assessed on the basis of the available nitrogen content);

(ii)the farmer shall not cultivate any potatoes or vegetable brassica crops.

Option B—Low nitrogen arable cropping (standard rotation)

(i)Except as provided in point (ii) below, the farmer shall not in any period of 12 months apply nitrogen fertiliser in excess of the quantity which would result in the application to the land of 150 kilograms of nitrogen per hectare or in excess of the crop requirement where that is less (and for this purpose the nitrogen content of organic nitrogen fertiliser shall be assessed on the basis of the available nitrogen content);

(ii)in one period of 12 months (which can be any such period covered by the undertakings) the farmer shall not apply nitrogen fertiliser in excess of the quantity which would result in the application to the land of 200 kilograms of nitrogen per hectare, or in excess of the crop requirement where that is less (and for this purpose the nitrogen content of organic nitrogen fertiliser shall be assessed on the basis of the available nitrogen content).

Regulation 7(b)(ii)

SCHEDULE 4REQUIREMENTS UNDER THE PREMIUM ARABLE SCHEME

The requirements referred to in regulation 7(b)(ii) are—

(1) the farmer shall have ceased arable production and have established a grassland sward before 1st October following the acceptance of his application for aid under these Regulations;

(2) the farmer shall maintain as grassland for the duration of the undertakings—

(a)all permanent grassland on his land within the nitrate sensitive area,

(b)any arable land converted to grassland, excluding grass leys, since 31st December 1991, and

(c)the land converted in accordance with paragraph (1);

(3) the farmer shall comply with the following provisions in respect of the land converted in accordance with paragraph (1)—

(a)the farmer shall not cultivate the grassland except where he has obtained the Minister’s approval in writing and in accordance with such approval;

(b)the farmer shall use only a seeds mixture which does not include legumes;

(c)the farmer shall remove cut grass where there is a risk of damage to the sward;

(d)the farmer shall not damage, destroy or remove stockproof walls, hedges, field trees, hedgerow trees, lakes, ponds or streams or other watercourses on or bordering the land except with the previous consent in writing of the Minister;

(e)the farmer shall not damage, destroy or remove any traditional weatherproof farm buildings or features of historical or archaeological interest or value except with the previous consent in writing of the Minister;

(f)the farmer shall comply with the requirements specified in any one of the Options headed Options A, B, C and D set out below.

Option A—conversion of arable land to grassland, unfertilised and ungrazed

(i)The farmer shall not apply any nitrogen fertiliser to the grassland or land planted with grass seed;

(ii)the farmer shall cut the grass at least twice each year;

(iii)the farmer shall not allow the grass to be grazed.

Option B—conversion of arable land to species rich grassland, unfertilised and ungrazed

(i)The farmer shall not apply any nitrogen fertiliser to the grassland or land planted with grass seed,

(ii)the farmer shall not cut the grass during the period commencing on 1st April and ending on 15th July in any year;

(iii)the farmer shall cut the grass at least once during the period commencing on 16th July in any year and ending on 30th March in the following year, except during the said period in which the undertakings commence or where otherwise approved by the Minister;

(iv)the farmer shall not allow the grass to be grazed;

(v)the farmer shall use a seeds mixture containing native grasses approved by the Minister prior to sowing.

Option C—conversion of arable land to unfertilised grassland with grazing

(i)The farmer shall not apply any nitrogen fertiliser to the grassland or land planted with grass seed;

(ii)the farmer shall ensure that land is not grazed with livestock in such numbers as adversely to affect the growth, quality or species composition of vegetation on that land to a significant degree or in such numbers that the stocking level exceeds 1.4 livestock units per hectare;

(iii)the farmer shall not increase the number of livestock on the grassland above that which may be fed from the grass alone and shall not provide supplementary feed except for health or welfare reasons.

Option D—conversion of arable land to grassland with optional grazing and limited application of nitrogen fertiliser

(i)The farmer shall not in any period of 12 months apply nitrogen fertiliser in excess of the quantity which would result in the application to the land of 150 kilograms of nitrogen per hectare (assessed as total nitrogen); and shall not apply any nitrogen fertiliser between 15 August in any year and the following 1st February;

(ii)the farmer shall ensure that land is not grazed with livestock in such numbers as adversely to affect the growth, quality or species composition of vegetation on that land to a significant degree or in such numbers that the stocking level exceeds 1.4 livestock units per hectare;

(iii)the farmer shall not increase the number of livestock on the land above that which may be fed from the grass alone and shall not provide supplementary feed except for health or welfare reasons;

(iv)the farmer shall keep adequate records in a form approved by the Minister of the amount of all applications of nitrogen fertiliser; the dates when such fertiliser was applied; and the areas of the land to which application was made.

Regulation (7)(b)(iii)

SCHEDULE 5REQUIREMENTS UNDER THE PREMIUM GRASS SCHEME

The requirements referred to in regulation 7(b)(iii) are—

(1) the farmer shall not in any period of 12 months apply nitrogen fertiliser in excess of the quantity which would result in the application to the land of 150 kilograms of nitrogen per hectare (assessed as total nitrogen); and shall not apply any nitrogen fertiliser between 15th August in any year and the following 1st February;

(2) the farmer shall remove cut grass where there is a risk of damage to the sward;

(3) the farmer shall not cultivate the land except where he has obtained the Minister’s approval in writing and in accordance with such approval;

(4) the farmer shall ensure that the land is not grazed with livestock in such numbers as adversely to affect the growth, quality or species composition of vegetation on that land to a significant degree or in such numbers that the stocking level exceeds 1.4 livestock units per hectare;

(5) the farmer shall not increase the number of livestock on the land above that which may be fed from the grass alone and shall not provide supplementary feed except for health or welfare reasons;

(6) the farmer shall ensure that, throughout the period of his undertakings, the area of intensive grassland on his land within the nitrate sensitive area does not exceed the area of intensive grassland on his holding (excluding the land subject to the other requirements of this Schedule) at the date his undertakings commence;

(7) the farmer shall keep adequate records in a form approved by the Minister of the amount of all applications of nitrogen fertiliser; the dates when such fertiliser was applied; and the areas of the land to which application was made;

(8) the farmer shall not damage, destroy or remove stockproof walls, hedges, field trees, hedgerow trees, lakes, ponds or streams or other watercourses on or bordering the land except with the previous consent in writing of the Minister;

(9) the farmer shall not damage, destroy or remove any traditional weatherproof farm buildings or features of historical or archaeological interest or value except with the previous consent in writing of the Minister.

Regulation 11

SCHEDULE 6RATES OF PAYMENT

Basic scheme

Option A—Low nitrogen arable cropping (restricted rotation)

1.  Where the undertakings given by a farmer include undertakings to comply with the requirements set out in Option A in Schedule 3, payments under these Regulations for each hectare of land in any nitrate sensitive area named in column (1) below shall be at the rate per year specified in the corresponding entry in column (2) below—

Column (1)Column (2)
Name of nitrate sensitive areaPayment per hectare per year
North Lincolnshire Wolds, Pollington, Hatfield, Carlton, North Newbald, Springwells, North Nottinghamshire, Amen Corner, Far Baulker, Aswarby, Sheriffhales, Grindle Forge, Bednall, Hopwas, Oakeley Farm, Kinver, Hagley, Duckaller.£105
Bromsberrow, Sedgeford, Slip End, Birchmoor.£80&

Option B—Low nitrogen arable cropping (standard rotation)

2.  Where the undertakings given by a farmer include undertakings to comply with the requirements set out in Option B in Schedule 3, payments under these Regulations for each hectare of land shall be at the rate of £65 per year.

Premium arable scheme

Option A—Conversion of arable land to grassland, unfertilised and ungrazed

3.  Where the undertakings given by a farmer include undertakings to comply with the requirements set out in Option A in Schedule 4, payments under these Regulations for each hectare of land in any nitrate sensitive area named in column (1) below shall be at the rate per year specified in the corresponding entry in column (2) below—

Column (1)Column (2)
Name of nitrate sensitive areaPayment per hectare per year
North Lincolnshire Wolds, Pollington, Hatfield, Carlton, North Newbald, Springwells, North Nottinghamshire, Amen Corner, Far Baulker, Aswarby.£550
Sheriffhales, Grindle Forge, Bednall, Hopwas, Oakeley Farm, Kinver, Hagley, Bromsberrow, Duckaller, Sedgeford, Slip End, Birchmoor.£450

Option B—Conversion of arable land to species rich grassland, unfertilised and ungrazed

4.  Where the undertakings given by a farmer include undertakings to comply with the requirements set out in Option B in Schedule 4, payments under these Regulations for each hectare of land in any nitrate sensitive area named in column (1) below shall be at the rate per year specified in the corresponding entry in column (2) below—

Column (1)Column (2)
Name of nitrate sensitive areaPayment per hectare per year
North Lincolnshire Wolds, Pollington, Hatfield, Carlton, North Newbald, Springwells, North Nottinghamshire, Amen Corner, Far Baulker, Aswarby.£590
Sheriffhales, Grindle Forge, Bednall, Hopwas, Oakeley Farm, Kinver, Hagley, Bromsberrow, Duckaller, Sedgeford, Slip End, Birchmoor.£490

Option C—Conversion of arable land to unfertilised grassland, with grazing

5.  Where the undertakings given by a farmer include undertakings to comply with the requirements set out in Option C in Schedule 4, payments under these Regulations for each hectare of land in any nitrate sensitive area named in column (1) below shall be at the rate per year specified in the corresponding entry in column (2) below—

Column (1)Column (2)
Name of nitrate sensitive areaPayment per hectare per year
North Lincolnshire Wolds, Pollington, Hatfield, Carlton, North Newbald, Springwells, North Nottinghamshire, Amen Corner, Far Baulker, Aswarby.£520
Sheriffhales, Grindle Forge, Bednall, Hopwas, Oakeley Farm, Kinver, Hagley, Bromsberrow, Duckaller, Sedgeford, Slip End, Birchmoor.£420

Option D—Conversion of arable land to grassland, with optional grazing and limited application of nitrogen fertiliser

6.  Where the undertakings given by a farmer include undertakings to comply with the requirements set out in Option D in Schedule 4, payments under these Regulations for each hectare of land in any nitrate sensitive area named in column (1) below shall be at the rate per year specified in the corresponding entry in column (2) below—

Column (1)Column (2)
Name of nitrate sensitive areaPayment per hectare per year
North Lincolnshire Wolds, Pollington, Hatfield, Carlton, North Newbald, Springwells, North Nottinghamshire, Amen Corner, Far Baulker, Aswarby.£440
Sheriffhales, Grindle Forge, Bednall, Hopwas, Oakeley Farm, Kinver, Hagley, Bromsberrow, Duckaller, Sedgeford, Slip End, Birchmoor.£340

Premium grass scheme

7.  Where the undertakings given by a farmer include undertakings to comply with the requirements set out in Schedule 5, payments under these Regulations for each hectare of land shall be at the rate of £250 per year.

Regulation 12(1)

SCHEDULE 7UPGRADING OF UNDERTAKINGS

Column (1)Column (2)Column (3)
Scheme in respect of which the farmer has given undertakingsDate before which application must be madeScheme for which the farmer may apply
Basic scheme—either option1st July which is 21 months after the 1st October when the original undertakings commencePremium arable scheme— any option
Premium arable scheme—option C1st July which is 33 months after the 1st October when the original undertakings commencePremium arable scheme—option A
Premium arable scheme—option D1st July which is 33 months after the 1st October when the original undertakings commencePremium arable scheme—option A or C

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