The European Biodiversity Strategy states that " biodiversity concerns will be integrated in the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) reform process announced in Agenda 2000". The strategy stresses the need "to encourage the ecological function of rural areas", "to integrate biodiversity objectives into the relevant instruments of the CAP" and "to promote farming methods enhancing biodiversity, by linking agricultural support to environmental conditions where appropriate".
The cirl bunting [Emberiza cirlus] was threatened with extinction in the UK because of a decrease in suitable habitat. The Countryside Stewardship Scheme paid farmers to retain cereal stubble and to establish grass margins around arable fields, which resulted in a marked recovery of the species. Similarly, skylarks [Alauda arvensis] favour the edge of a field rather than crops, which suggests that agri-environment schemes could be designed to support this species. Other UK schemes have been successful in retaining habitat that might have otherwise been destroyed, such as wet grassland that could have been ploughed for cereal production.