The planned increases in Natural Resources Wales' (NRW) regulation fees and costs have drawn vehement resistance from NFU Cymru.
The proposals involve upping the quantity charged for water abstraction/impoundment licences from £135 to £6,327, charging ten times more than before for application requests regarding land spreading of used or depleted sheep dip, and suggesting they dismiss the existing tiered charging system for hydroelectric power technologies.
“The planned increases in Natural Resources Wales' (NRW) regulation fees and costs have drawn vehement resistance from NFU Cymru“
Furthermore, the NRW is charging £125/hour for pre-application guidance and a 6% hike in yearly fees collected to recoup the expenses of measuring and evaluating permit obligingness.
Hedd Pugh, Chair of the NFU Cymru Rural Affairs Board, expressed that “in the context of the very significant inflationary pressures faced by farm businesses for key inputs such as energy, feed and fertiliser, the industry is dismayed at NRW’s proposals.”
Farmers fully comprehend the NRW’s need to “recover costs” but they are “astonished at the scale of the proposed cost increases” deemed “excessive and prohibitive to many farm businesses in Wales.”
‘‘The union has stressed in its response that the onus is on NRW to show that the costs are fair, proportionate and competitive”
NFU Cymru believes the proposals “work against Welsh Government policy objectives” which aim to achieve “net zero, a circular economy and animal health and welfare”. They will discourage “the adoption of enterprises, technologies and practices that deliver wider environmental and socio-economic benefits on Welsh farms.”
Pushing up “costs for sheep dip disposal 10 times will hinder efforts to eradicate sheep scab”, a “long-standing priority.”
“NFU Cymru says that they are determined to “identify and develop solutions that enable NRW to keep its costs to farmers under control.”
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