A future to protect

The UK is one of the most nature-depleted countries in the world. The Government is committed to restoring nature, including a legally-binding commitment to halt the decline in species abundance by 2030 and a pledge to protect and effectively manage 30% of land and sea for nature by 2030.

To meet these targets, the Government will need support from new private investment into nature restoration to create, enhance or protect various forms of “natural capital” such as woodlands, peatlands and other multi-benefit natural habitats and systems. This has seen the creation of a number of existing and emerging markets for natural capital products such as carbon credits, biodiversity units and nutrient credits. These markets provide a whole host of opportunities and challenges for rural landowners.

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With new and emerging markets and government schemes, it is important to take legal advice to make sure you have the right agreements in place and to ensure you know the full implications of entering a scheme in terms of future land use, its value and tax implications for example.

  • Advising on and drafting environmental unit sale and purchase agreements.
  • Preparation of environmental/conservation covenants and S106 agreements for environmental schemes.
  • Finance agreements.
  • Collaboration agreements between multiple landowners wishing to benefit from environmental schemes.
  • Preparation of promotion agreements, promoting land for natural capital.
  • Assisting landowners in bringing ‘oven ready’ environmental schemes to the market, whether that be via the selling of environmental units/credits, or a sale or lease of land.
  • Working in partnership with land agents to value land for natural capital.
  • Assisting in applying for planning permissions and preparing any environmental management agreements needed to accompany the application.
  • Advising in relation to habitat management agreements and plans.
  • Advising on green energy projects such a battery storage, solar and wind farms and drafting relevant legal agreements.
  • Advice on the pros and cons of entering into environmental schemes in the context of succession planning for farming businesses.
  • Advice on impact on long term land use and land value when considering entering land in natural capital schemes.
  • Advice on tax implications for the change in use of land from traditional farming to environmental schemes.
  • Advice on disputes arising as a result of an environmental scheme, for example:
    • Enforcing the terms of agreements.
    • Interpretation of clauses in agreements.
    • Breach of conservation covenants and S106 agreements.
    • Breaches of planning obligations or planning conditions.
    • Landlord and tenant disputes over who can benefit from natural capital on the holding.

Why choose Foot Anstey?

Foot Anstey is a panel firm for the National Farmers Union and can provide farmers and other rural landowners with advice in relation to all natural capital schemes.

We have large teams of specialist lawyers in real estate, clean energy and infrastructure, planning, tax and succession, to name but a few, who can provide a wealth of experience and legal expertise in this area.

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Our team of specialist lawyers are here to help and can support you through all elements of your transaction to produce environmental goods on your land.

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What do our clients say?

“Foot Anstey have handled very complex matters involving multiple parties in a reassuring and professional way – taking time to explain all elements of the complexity to the client. They go the extra mile for their agricultural and rural clients and respond to new enquiries from potential clients with care and authority.”

“All highly professional, with specialist technical experience to our specialist sector in agriculture and related matters.”

“Superb on agricultural matters and clearly understand their clients’ industry and way of life. A least of few of them come from farming backgrounds, which builds trust and allows them to find the right solutions.”

“A superb team of talented lawyers with strength in depth.”

“They are a well-respected and competent team in the South West. Their skill set for agricultural law is with reference to holdings, partnerships, wills/trusts and inheritance and they have got a lot of expertise.”

“Foot Anstey are excellent – a fantastic experience. They assisted our members with a complex environmental case. Foot Anstey have parked jobs and dedicated members of staff to the job and got it sorted in 6-8 weeks.”

“They combine being extremely personable and client friendly with an encyclopaedic knowledge of their subject.”

Legal 500 2024

“The practice is very professional and has experts in many fields. This gives a client security that the person that they are dealing with has experience and knowledge on hand if need be. The collaborative facility gives the client more scope ‘in-house’ on different aspects of their needs.”

Legal 500 2024

“Excellent service and explanations of complicated laws and legal terms. My solicitor has given and explained that there are different options to tax liabilities etc, for me to have the knowledge to decide the best way forward.”

Legal 500 2024

“The team at Foot Anstey are approachable, friendly and knowledgeable. They are deeply immersed in the renewable energy and EV sectors and always give practical and tailored advice.”

Legal 500 2024

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