11 Agricultural Resources
11.1.1 To carry out the works in such a way to protect good quality agricultural land from damage and to contain and limit adverse effects on agricultural resources as far as reasonably practicable.
11.2 Agriculture Management Plan
11.2.1 As explained in Section 1.7 of this CoCP, the contractor’s EMP will include an Agriculture Management Plan which will include details of the controls to be implemented to mitigate potential impacts on farms including maintaining access.
11.2.2 The Agriculture Management Plan will include the following, as appropriate:
- Maps showing the farms adjacent to the construction site.
- Maps showing watercourses and, where known, field drainage layouts and outfalls into watercourses or ditches.
- Details of the landowners, occupiers and agents for farms adjacent to the construction site.
- Details of the husbandry associated with the areas of farms adjacent to the construction site.
- Procedures to be adopted for the appropriate protection of agricultural land adjacent to the construction site, including information regarding appropriate stock-proof fencing to be provided and maintained.
- Procedures to be adopted to undertake survey works to record the condition of existing agricultural land which may be used temporarily during construction, including agricultural land quality and land drainage, as appropriate. See also Section 3.6 of this CoCP.
- Procedures to be adopted for the reinstatement of any agricultural land which is used temporarily during construction.
- A programme indicating when temporary occupation of agricultural land will be taken and when any agricultural land used temporarily is intended to be returned to agricultural use.
- Procedures to be adopted in relation to the provision of accommodation works including a programme for the provision of accommodation works.
- Details of accesses which may be affected by construction, including the procedures to be implemented to maintain access. See also Section 4.4 of this CoCP.
- Procedures to be followed in relation to the stripping, handling, storage and replacement of topsoil on areas of land to be returned to agricultural use following construction.
11.2.3 The contractor will appoint a liaison officer who will be responsible for liaising with affected landowners, occupiers and agents, as appropriate. See also Section 2 of this CoCP.
11.2.4 The contractor will advise landowners, occupiers and agents, as appropriate, regarding the intended commencement of construction works in areas of the site adjacent to agricultural holdings. The contractor will also liaise with landowners, occupiers and agents, as appropriate, regarding the provision of accommodation works to agree the programme of works and access routes to be used. The contractor will take reasonable precautions in developing the construction programme to reduce disturbance, without detriment to the overall construction programme.
11.3 Mitigation of Potential Impacts on Agricultural Resources
11.3.1 The contractor will implement appropriate measures in accordance with guidance produced by the Scottish Government Rural Payments and Inspections Directorate (formerly the Scottish Executive Environment and Rural Affairs Department (SEERAD)) in relation to undertaking works on or adjacent to agricultural land. Relevant guidance covering measures associated with soils erosion, soil organic matter, soil structure and minimum level of maintenance includes:
- the code of good practice – Prevention of Environmental Pollution from Agricultural Activity (commonly known as the PEPFAA Code);
- Good Agricultural and Environmental Condition measures for Scotland (GAEC); and
- the Scottish Soil Framework Consultation Document.
11.3.2 The contractor will also implement appropriate measures in accordance with the Code of Good Agricultural Practice – Protecting our Water, Soil and Air in 2009 published by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).
11.3.3 Prior to works commencing on agricultural land which will be used temporarily or land which will be returned to agricultural use following construction, the contractor will undertake surveys to record the existing quality of land, including the condition of the following, as appropriate:
- Topsoil and subsoil.
- Roads, accesses and paths.
- Agricultural land adjacent to the construction site.
11.3.4 The contractor will implement appropriate procedures in relation to the stripping, handling, storage and replacement of agricultural soils to mitigate risks associated with soil degradation. The contractor will undertake reinstatement of land used temporarily for construction in accordance with the requirements of the Forth Crossing Bill. See also the requirements of Section 3.6 of this CoCP in relation to the land to be used for construction, including provision of appropriate fencing to maintain the security of the site.
11.3.5 The contractor will take reasonable precautions in relation to storage of agricultural soils, including the following, as appropriate:
- Handling and storing different soils separately, particularly top soils and sub soils.
- Taking appropriate measures to prevent contamination of soils with chemicals or other materials.
- Undertaking turf cutting in dry weather and ground conditions, where reasonably practicable to avoid damaging the soil through compaction or loss of soil by erosion.
11.3.6 The contractor will comply with the requirements of Section 6 of this CoCP relating to handling and storage of material and Section 9 of this CoCP in relation to control of run-off insofar as they are applicable to protecting agricultural soils.
11.3.7 The contractor will take reasonable precautions in the design and construction of the Project to identify, protect and maintain existing land drainage systems.
11.3.8 The contractor will comply with the requirements of Section 10.4 of this CoCP in relation to measures to prevent the spread of invasive and alien species.
11.3.9 The contractor will comply with the requirements of the Scottish Government Rural Payments and Inspections Directorate and appropriate guidance to avoid, as far as possible, the spread of soil borne, crop and animal diseases. The contractor will implement appropriate measures, such as those described in Section 9 of this CoCP, will to control run-off to reduce any risks associated with disease transmission.
11.3.10 The contractor will take reasonable precautions to identify locations of carcass burial sites within the construction site to mitigate risks associated with the existence of any unrecorded sites.
11.3.11 The contractor will liaise with landowners, occupiers and agents, as appropriate, to establish requirements and measures to be implemented to maintain livestock water supplies which may be affected due to construction works.
11.4.1 The contractor will implement monitoring procedures in accordance with the requirements of Section 6 of the CoCP relating to storage of materials and Section 9 of this CoCP in relation to protection of the water environment, as appropriate.
11.4.2 The contractor will ensure that the Landscape Clerk of Works (see Section 13 of this CoCP) monitors topsoil stripping, handling and storage as appropriate to facilitate compliance with the this section of the CoCP in relation to agricultural soils.
11.4.3 The contractor will undertake monitoring as necessary to maintain security of the site as required to comply with Section 3.6 of this CoCP.
- Code of Good Agricultural Practice for farmers, growers and land managers – Protecting our Water, Soil and Air, Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs, 2009
- Code of Good Practice – Prevention of Environmental Pollution from Agricultural Activity, The Scottish Executive, 2005
- Cross Compliance Notes for Guidance. (Incorporating Good Agricultural and Environmental Condition), The Scottish Executive, 2005
- Environmental Protection Act 1990, as amended
- Farm Soils Plan, Protecting soils and income in Scotland, The Scottish Executive, 2005
- Scottish Planning Policy 15 [SPP15] Planning for Rural Development
- The Scottish Soil Framework. A Consultation Document, The Scottish Government, 2008
- Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, as amended