We are delighted to announce that Greenhouse is helping to fund a peatland restoration project in support of World Peatlands Day on 2nd June, with our partners Forest Carbon.
Scientists estimate that 80% of the UK’s peatlands are degraded in some way. That is an enormous problem, because these huge carbon stores are now releasing 23 million tonnes of CO2e into the atmosphere every year. To put that figure in context, 23Mt is around 5% of the UK’s total carbon footprint, more than half of the 9% that aviation contributed in 2019. If the UK is to reach net-zero by 2050, restoring our degraded peatlands will be essential.
Peatlands also suffer from a PR problem. Compared to tree planting, peatland restoration is not very well known as a nature-based solution and even amongst those who are aware of it, woodland creation is often more appealing. Somehow we need to make bogs seem more attractive, to extol their virtues until the public are as engaged in issues like peat-extraction for gardening compost as they are about deforestation.
Encouragingly, there are signs that peatland conservation is gaining traction at last, with a recent announcement from the UK government that peat-based compost will be banned in this country by 2024, but there is still much work to do.
As a PR agency, Greenhouse wanted to do our bit to boost the profile of peatland restoration. So, with help from our partners, Forest Carbon, we have decided to invest in a UK project, purchasing 104 carbon credits from a just-restored peatland near Gameshope Loch.
104 tonnes CO2 is more than our agency’s carbon footprint was in 2020, including scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions. We will also be funding other restorative and regenerative nature projects,that will ultimately add up to more than 20 times our carbon footprint in 2021.
“In recognition of the carbon impact of our operations during 2020 we are investing in UK peatland restoration, to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from degraded peatlands. Our support of this project in Scotland will also increase the ability of that peatland to store water, support wildlife and mitigate the risk of flooding downstream”, says Anna Guyer, Founder of Greenhouse PR.
- Project Name: Gameshope Loch, Talla and Gameshope Estate
- Location: Scottish Borders
- Total restoration area: 48.3 hectares
- Anticipated CO2e Avoided: 11,336 tonnes
The peatland restoration at Gameshope loch is part of a wider, multi-site project to tackle degraded peatlands across the Talla and Gameshope estate in Scotland. The land is owned and managed by the charity Borders Forest Trust, who are committed to restoring it for nature, by planting trees and scrub, and also helping blanket bogs to recover.
A combination of bare peat re-vegetation, hagg re-profiling and gully blocking will allow the water table to rise and peat-forming plant species to re-colonise the area. These plants sequester carbon while they are alive and the waterlogged habitat prevents them from decomposing when they die, resulting in their carbon being stored as layers of peat.
By restoring the peatland, this project will not only reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the degraded habitat, but will also allow the landscape to store more water and support a greater diversity of wildlife, including iconic species like red grouse and hen harrier.
Another aim of this project is education, with the Borders Forest Trust hoping to host site visits from academics, policy makers and conservation bodies, to raise awareness about peatlands and demonstrate effective techniques for delivering restoration.
Thank you to Forest Carbon to all the work that they do in regenerative agriculture and in planting and protecting UK woodland, soils and peatland.
Join with us in celebrating World Peatland Day and for more information, please contact Forest Carbon. If you are a pioneer in nature-based solutions or regenerative agriculture, we would love to hear from you and to help scale the impact of what you do, with our specialist communications team at Greenhouse.