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What would the moors and green rolling hills of England look like without any grass or animals to eat it?

Very different to today that’s for sure – confirmed by some forward thinking research carried out by Land Use Consultants (LUC) for EBLEX.

They have used ‘crystal balls’ to see what could happen to some of England’s most cherished landscapes if beef cattle and sheep disappeared.

The report was commissioned in the wake of calls from some pressure groups for people to eat less meat to reduce harmful environmental emissions.

But grazing animals and their management maintain the countryside looking as it does. Cutting livestock numbers could have a negative environmental impact – our landscapes could look very much poorer for it.

Views of the future

Vale of Pickering Now, 2011

Rolling farmland in the Vale of Pickering now, 2011

Vale of Pickering in 30 years, 2041

Vale of Pickering in 30 years, 2041

View of Dartmoor Now, 2011

Moorland commons on Dartmoor now, 2011

View of Dartmoor in 30 years, 2041

View of Dartmoor in 30 years, 2041

The report highlights how loss of grazing stock could turn green and pleasant pasture into arable land, fragmented plots of smallholdings and pony paddocks or untidy, inaccessible scrub with less bio-diverse swards.

Nick Allen, EBLEX sector director says it is important that the many positives about livestock production are not ignored, and hopes this report will balance the debate on the effect of grazing animals on the environment.

Which would you prefer? Which is better for the environment?

To view ‘Landscapes without Livestock’ click here.

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