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Online Workshop: Policy scenarios on drained peatlands

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23.03.2021

VC Peatwise Group

Together with more than 20 stakeholders from Finland, Germany and the Netherlands, the ZALF working group of “Governance of Ecosystem Services” hosted an online w orkshop in 15th March in the context of the research project “PEATWISE”. The workshop aimed to discuss political actions needed at the EU and national level that could contribute towards a transition for climate neutral land use on peatlands by 2050.

The EU is globally the second largest emitter of greenhouse gases from drained peatlands. As the EU affirmed the core goal of the Paris Agreement which set zero net CO2 emissions by 2050, reducing emissions from peatlands deserves an important place in Europe’s climate policies. Nevertheless, a comprehensive climate policy target for emissions reductions from drained peatlands is lacking in specific EU and national policies.

Participants from policy-makers from national, regional and local levels, agricultural associations (farmer organizations, land care organizations), water boards, and researchers had joined together to discuss the pathways for a transition, policy instruments and ways to help farmers.

Conservation of peatlands, such as the cultivation of wet-adapted crops or the restoration of natural conditions, or raising the water levels are widely accepted as cost-effective measures for climate change mitigation. However, as they often imply high costs of conversion and management, farmers need economic incentives sufficiently attractive to initiate the transition. Furthermore, to reduce emissions on peatlands at a large scale, cooperation must be facilitated between neighbouring farmers and different sectors.

In addition to the discussion, three input presentations were made on:

  1. Results of GHGs measurement of mitigation measures,
  2. Economic and regulatory instruments guiding towards sustainable use of peatlands in Finland, Germany and the Netherlands,
  3. Farmer motivations for cooperative action of peatland management in the Netherlands.

We would like to thank all participants for their valuable contributions and fruitful discussions.

 

Pictures

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VC Peatwise Group | Source: © Margarethe Schneider.
VC Peatwise Group | Source: © Margarethe Schneider.

 

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