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Modern farming activities can have a significant influence on the quality of the wider environment.

In most cases – and this is largely due to the work of farmers and land managers – this influence is positive.

However, some activities, such as inappropriate application and storage of manures, slurries and inorganic fertilisers, misuse of pesticides and other chemicals, inappropriate cultivation techniques and the impacts of livestock on the environment can result in the pollution of both water and land. 

Diffuse pollution, has been identified as a significant issue and can have a negative impact on water quality across the whole of a river catchment.

In addition to regulating agricultural activities, we monitor land use activity and promote sustainable land management. We help land managers adopt best practice and increase efficiency, as well as protect the environment.

We are members of Scotland’s Environmental and Rural Services, a partnership of eight public bodies working with land managers to enhance efficiency, thereby helping to protect and improve the rural environment.

We work closely with farmers and other land managers to protect Scotland’s biodiversity and habitats and our work on climate change is a key factor in informing much of Scotland’s environmental strategy.  

Scotland’s Environment contains a wide range of information on how agriculture affects the environment both positively and negatively and how it is managed and monitored to ensure the sustainability of the environment as a whole.

For more information about how we work with farmers to protect the environment, please contact us.