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Scoping study to assess soil compaction affecting upland and lowland grassland in England and Wales - BD2304

Description
Soils in the moist regions of England are especially vulnerable to compaction because they lie wet for protracted periods of the year. Under enclosed and open grassland, farm traffic and heavy grazing are the principal causes of compaction. Traditionally, soil compaction has been seen solely as a cause of reduced grass productivity. However soil compaction, in its various forms, also impacts on above and below ground biodiversity, the flows and quality of natural waters and atmospheric quality. This scoping project will report on current knowledge in these fields and will also include an assessment of the extent, causes and also potential remediation techniques for soil compaction.

The study will be of relevance to Defra as the maintenance of biodiversity and environmental quality are cornerstones and main objectives of the new Environmental Stewardship Scheme. The various schemes that make up Environmental Stewardship contain a range of management options for grassland farmers. In many instances, farmers who have elected to adopt a particular option are obliged to follow management prescriptions that may influence the extent of soil compaction. This project will seek to elaborate any synergies and conflicts between good soil management and the Environmental Stewardship Scheme. Priorities for further research are a part of the project output.

A non-technical document describing the effects of compaction on biodiversity and the quality of the natural environment will be written as well as a full technical report and paper for peer-reviewed publication. A stakeholder workshop will assist in communicating the output from the project and will enable the project team to capture the views and knowledge of a wider audience of stakeholders.
Project Documents
• Final Report : Scoping study to assess soil compaction affecting upland and lowland grassland in England and Wales   (1297k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 1 Mapping the Extent of Soil Compaction   (1798k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 2 The Causes of Soil Compaction   (63k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 3.1 The impacts of Soil Compaction   (492k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 3.2 The Impacts of Soil Compaction   (42k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 3.3 The Impacts of Soil Compaction   (3243k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 3.4 The Impacts of Soil Compaction   (1486k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 3.5 The Impacts of Soil Compaction   (61k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 3.6 The Impacts of Soil Compaction   (102k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 4 Conflicts and Synergies within Existing and Potential ES Options between Objectives Relating to Soil Compaction and its Remediation and other Scheme Objectives   (24k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 5 Responses Received at the Stakeholder Group   (44k)
• Final Report - Annex : Appendix 6 Glossary of terms   (15k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2007

To: 2007

Cost: £29,707
Contractor / Funded Organisations
University - Cranfield
Keywords
Biodiversity              
Environmental Protection              
Land              
Wetlands              
Fields of Study
Environmental Stewardship