Results-Based Agri-environment Payment Scheme (RBAPS) pilot study in England11/10/2019
In 2016 the EU Directorate General awarded a 3-year grant to Natural England and the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA) to jointly run a pilot study, known as the Results-Based Agri-environment Payment Scheme (RBAPS).
The project is continuing to March 2021 with Defra funding. It is part of the Tests and Trials programme to inform the new Environmental Land Management system.
Agreement holders get paid by results, not by following set methods. Management actions taken are not assessed. Agreement holders can choose the most suitable method to achieve the agreed end result.
RBAPS is being applied to 4 land management options – 2 options each in 2 locations in England. The tables show how RBAPS management options compare to current Environmental Stewardship (ES) and Countryside Stewardship (CS) options.
The 2 pilot study areas test grassland and arable management options.
Grassland options – Wensleydale, North Yorkshire
|RBAPS option||Species rich hay meadow|
|ES comparable options||HK6 – maintenance of species rich, semi-natural grassland, HK7 – restoration of species rich, semi-natural grassland|
|CS comparable options||GS6 – management of species rich grassland, GS7 – restoration towards species rich grassland|
|RBAPS option||Habitat for breeding waders|
|ES comparable options||HL7 – maintenance of rough grazing birds, HL8 – restoration of rough grazing for birds|
|CS comparable option||UP2 – management of rough grazing for birds|
Read the grassland factsheet on this page for progress in Wensleydale.
Arable options – Norfolk and Suffolk
|RBAPS option||Winter bird food|
|ES comparable options||EF2/HF2 – wild bird seed mixture, HF12 – enhanced wild bird seed mixture|
|CS comparable option||AB9 – winter bird food|
|RBAPS option||Pollen and nectar|
|ES comparable option||EF4/HF4 – nectar flower mix|
|CS comparable option||AB1 – nectar flower mix|
Read the arable factsheet on this page for progress in Norfolk and Suffolk.
Natural England and the YDNPA will:
- design and implement the pilot scheme
- develop ways of measuring results for the 4 management options
- monitor control sites
- analyse results
Results will test how:
- RBAPS affects environmental performance
- accurately farmers carry out self-assessment as part of the new approach
- cost effective the approach is
- well farmers and stakeholders respond to the approach
The final report for the 2016 to 2018 study concluded that the results-based approach has considerable potential for the design of future land management schemes. The Defra trial will continue to publish newsletters each year.
The National Audit Office report on the government’s use of payment by results schemes concluded that sharing good practice and gathering strong evidence is vital for the success of these schemes.
The EU funded 2 other pilot studies. These were in: