Why peatland restoration?
Peatlands store more carbon than any other terrestrial ecosystem, both in the UK and globally. As a result of human disturbance they are rapidly losing this carbon to the atmosphere, contributing significantly to global greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.
We want to turn this problem into a solution, by re-establishing and augmenting the unique natural capacity of peatlands to remove CO2 from the atmosphere and to store it securely for millennia. We will do this by working with natural processes to recreate and enhance the environmental conditions that lead to peat formation
Implementation of new land management approaches to the 2.3 million hectares of degraded upland and lowland bog in the UK has the potential to secure carbon securely and permanently within a natural and biodiverse ecosystem
The project will develop new and practical economic models to support greenhouse gas removal by peatlands as part of profitable and sustainable farming and land management systems.
We will develop innovative cropping and management systems that will augment rates of CO2 uptake and at the same time optimise conditions to avoid emissions of methane and nitrous oxide that could offset the benefits of the CO2 removal. The project will also evaluate whether we can further increase peat carbon accumulation through the formation and addition of biomass and biochar to degraded peatlands and accelerate peat formation.
Professor Chris Evans, UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology
Research team / project partners
The project is staffed by a broad and diverse team from:
UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (lead)
Scotland's Rural College
University of East London
University of Manchester