11. What does the future hold?

In a world of increasing demand for food and fibre, against the backdrop of continuing degradation of the environment, our uplands face significant challenges.  Additionally, whilst society values the cultural and recreational opportunities provided by the uplands, upland communities only rarely reap the associated benefits.   Scenarios can be used to aid the discussion and the development of future strategies to respond to these challenges.

By examining drivers of change at both local and global scale, we identified four UK upland scenarios: agricultural intensification, business as usual, managed ecosystems and abandonment (pictured here). We are using these scenarios to draw maps of predicted land use change, a key resource for making management decisions that promote river biodiversity and the benefits that rivers provide.

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