Trees Trees Trees

Captain Qahn's picture

Yet another hidden gem from within the vaults of the Awl, penned by Alan Tomlinson, Scarborough Borough Council's Countryside & Ecology Officer:


How does this fit into the RWCE?

Why choose Woodland's Trust over Yorkshire Wildlife & the NYMNPA?

Why is the volunteer form like an application for some interior ministry?

This is the first Community Asset Transfer that SBC has, erm 'activated'. 

MM xx

Why were the NYMNPA, Forestry Commission & Yorks. Wildlife trust 'excluded'? The NYMNPA know about woodland & trees ....  Not HP.  Do your own editing ...

With lots more trees from the NYMNPA - via York Portash :

"Woodland creation costsCapital costs stated are based on a combination of standard costs, grant rates and past actual costs. Page 40 of 47 In the National Park new woodlands usually require protection from mammals and domestic stock as well as reliance on some planting rather than natural regeneration. This means low cost establishment is rarely achievable. Ongoing or management costs comprise: -

-Compensatory payments for loss of agricultural production

-Compensatory payments for loss of farm payments or other grants

-Maintenance of trees

-Maintenance of fencing and walls

The figures are based on Basic Farm Payment rates and historic grant rates in the National Park and Forestry Commission schemes. The £60/ha incentive is the minimum level (excluding Basic Payment Scheme) that is considered appropriate for low productivity land. It is difficult to determine know how much potential woodland creation land is in Basic Payment Scheme or other land management schemes, but a significant proportion should be assumed due to the low criteria for entry. The scheme could have included alternative tree planting through creation of new wood pasture and more in-field trees, but Carbon benefits are likely to be far less clear.

Resource and Costs Implementation costs Actual expenditure on any woodland creation project varies greatly from case to case. In some circumstances initial costs may be negligible where woodland develops naturally following the removal of grazing. However in most cases there will be a requirement for fencing, tree planting, individual tree protection, and subsequent maintenance. Given the long term nature of the development and the funding there is a case for allowing woodlands to develop naturally over a much longer time period than fits with existing grant mechanisms. There may be economies in this method and the outcomes could be ecologically more interesting. Conversely if we wish to account for carbon sequestration in an accountable way the scheme would need to aim toplant trees at a minimum of 1,100 per hectare and ensure the majority survive. A theoretical cost for establishing one hectare of new woodland to the specification usually required within the National Park would be in the order of £5,600 (3 year establishment period). This figure might be higher for very small areas, but significantly lower for larger areas where economies of scale might be applied. Standard costs quoted elsewhere are between £4,868 and £9,802 per hectare. These figures are probably still valid, although materials such as tree shelters and stakes have increased in cost by approximately 15% recently. York Potash Limited have suggested that a figure of £4,200 per hectare for a 5 year establishment period would be appropriate but this does not include an allowance for fencing and the premiums and compensation that may be required to deliver such woodland through such funding and across the areas being considered. Page 41 of 47 The costings set out in this document relate to the National Park’s experience of delivering woodland work in over recent years and they indicate a figure of £3,800/ha to £4,600/ha would cover the establishment cost for trees planted at the minimum spacing required for Forestry Commission grant aid (and the widest spacing accommodated in the woodland carbon code tables) but with no allowance for  fencing. Current Forestry Commission grant for priority woodland sites funds at £4,800/ha (80% in year 1, 20% in year 2). The recent increase in uptake of this grant in the region indicates that this level of grant is satisfactory. The additional annual payments (see below) available and the retention of Basic Payment Scheme on eligible land is also a factor. This has now been superseded by Countryside Stewardship. Woodland creation is now supported by a capital grant up to a ceiling of £6,800/ha (based on standard costs of trees, fencing, planting etc). In addition there is an annual maintenance payment of £200/ha for 10 years. Single/basic farm payments continue to be paid on eligible land (in receipt of payment from 2009). York Potash Limited’s Carbon Forestry Report states that the Authority (12/3/2013) wrote to the Company setting out the methodology for woodland planting and aftercare. This quotes a range suggested by Forestry Commission of  £4,500/ha - £5,000/ha.

Provision of sites - The figures above do not take into account the supply of land for tree planting. Under the Forestry Commission scheme an annual payment is available for 15 years to compensate for agricultural income foregone. This is rated at £60/ha/year for unimproved land and £200/ha/year for improved land outside the Severely Disadvantaged Area (SDA). This equates to £900/ha and £3,000/ha respectively. However in the new scheme there is no compensation payments as such. The new maintenance payment is a flat rate of £200/ha for 10 years. In the National Park officers would expect the majority of new woodland to be on unimproved or low productivity land. Some form of compensation or incentive would be required in most cases to release land for new woodland. This factor remains and is difficult to quantify, but a minimum figure of £60/ha (as per the now redundant EWGS) would be a starting point.The value of low productivity land is strongly related to environmental and farm support payments, mainly environmental stewardship and single farm payments. Currently under Forestry Commission schemes Basic Payment Scheme is unaffected and ELS can be held on the same parcel. Basic Payment Scheme may not be eligible on a privately funded woodland creation scheme. The future of these payments is uncertain in both the immediate and longer term.

Basic Payment Schemes (where in place) would be lost under woodland creation through this scheme and as much of the land for woodland creation will be receiving these payments compensation for the losses would need to be incorporated. Basic Payment Scheme is in the region of £195/ha/yr. Creation of wood pasture maybe possible with retention of the payment. The future of Basic Payment Scheme needs to be checked as the scheme is developed. Low productivity land is important to many farms for practical reasons, such as shelter in poor weather and to aid the better management of their land. A greater acceptance of lower density Page 42of 47 planting and grazing might help meet these concerns. The carbon balance in such systems is unknown at present. Meeting the National Park Management Plan aspirations for increasing woodland cover is likely to be delivered through a combination of woodland and wood pasture creation. It is still the case that officers of the Authority cannot use the woodland carbon code methodology to quantify carbon sequestration directly for the measures being proposed. It is estimated however that 142 tCO2e/hectare over 100 years is the most reasonable figure.

Unit Costs

1. Incorporate a compensatory payment or incentive into the costs. It is suggested that this is a minimum of £60/ ha for 15 years = £900

2. Incorporate a compensatory payment for loss of Basic Payment Scheme where applicable. It is suggested to use a figure of £195/ha for 10 Years = £1,950

3. Average capital and establishment costs remain broadly as found at £4,800/ha

4. Total for above gives £7,650/ha. This is significantly higher than previously but does take into account the very real barriers to woodland creation on land that has some economic benefit to land manager.

Calculation Price per hectare is £7,650 (includes £4,800 capital and establishment costs, £1,950 loss of subsidy payment, £900 incentive but full incentive/management cost for CSS of £3,000 not used i.e. could be higher)

Energy requirement 400 tonnes CO2 equivalent per hectare over 100 years (upland areas could yield much lower rate). Some10% of offset requirement over 100 years divided by 400 = 7, 154.4 hectares which is equal to 4.98% of the National Park. 7,154.4 times £7, 650 per hectare = £54,731,160 Assuming a delivery period of 100 years = 71.54 hectares per year Facilitation and administration etc at 20% is £10,946,232

TOTAL £65,677,392." see here ;

What could go wrong?



Mortal Mindy's picture

Wood Shine

The answer:

The Woodland Trust want to create a commercial Biomass operation... that takes 8 years to be commercially viable, with an added 20 years to get  a return of their investment, hence the 20-30 year lease offered by the Officer's of  SBC ...

Political stability?

Oh & apparently the Council as a LA is not allowed to turn a profit ...


Benefitz Betty's picture

SBC: Tree & Woodland Strategy

"Each year we receive many enquries from the public about trees on Council owned land and also privately owned trees, to make sure we respond to this fairly and consistently we need to have a comprehensive tree & woodland strategy with agreed actions. It is important that this document matches the public mood so consultation is key to its’ success."

Find the the Draft Strategy at the scrolls.

Scrolls ...  "the AGM for RWCE that was to be on Wednesday the 13th April 2016 has been postponed until May, to enable all paper work to be sent out, no date has been given for May, but 21 days notes must be giving of the AGM."

RWCE has not yet notified it's members of the AGM but is expected to take place in May.

"Just had email back from Robert Sword the AGM probably 17th May, but awaiting confirmation of a venue."

Capt. 'Bob''s picture

Clear-Cutting Forests

"Clear-cutting forests could be hurting ecosystems more than we realize. Scientists have found that clear-cut forests are less likely to hold carbon.

""Clear-cutting forests has an effect of mobilizing the carbon, making it more likely to leave the soil and end up in the atmosphere,...""

Lurch : I see no red dots at Raincliffe Woods :

Hmmm... Wood 'Stalkers' :

"Want to Buy Some Wood?"

There used to be strict regs on wood imp/exports ...

Ah, so :

Wood burners ... ah so ...  natural gas stuff.