Severn Trent has increased its STEPS (Severn Trent Environmental Protection Scheme) funding offer to up to £30,000 for farm improvements that address water quality issues.
Dr Alex Cooke, principal catchment management scientist at Severn Trent, says that the company has listened to its farmers and increased funding on priority items, making STEPS really stack up for farmers looking to protect the environment while easing the financial burden.
“There’s no doubt that it’s a challenging time for farmers, with uncertainty around ELM schemes and the future of subsidy payments, as well as significant hikes in input costs, putting margins under pressure.
“We’ve taken all this into consideration and doubled the previous maximum match funding offer from £5,000 up to £10,000 for all items. But in catchments where pesticide reduction is a priority, farmers can apply for up to £30,000 for washdown and disposal areas, and there’s also up to 75% funding for watercourse fencing,” says Alex.
The funding is available to farmers in Severn Trent priority catchments and aims to address issues such as nitrates, pesticides and cryptosporidium reaching watercourses. “Depending on the priority issue in your catchment, a range of items are available from cover crops and pesticide washdown bays, to livestock fencing and covered handling areas,” she explains.
More information about the STEPS grant and how to apply can be found online at: www.STwater.com/STEPS