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18 May 2022

Vast amount of Longford peatland transformed into Carbon Store

Peat

A vast amount of peatland in Longford and Roscommon transformed into Carbon Store in 2021.

A vast amount of peatland in Longford and Roscommon transformed into Carbon Store in 2021.

According to Bord na Móna, nearly 5,200ha (12,800 acres) of peatlands were rehabilitated in the past year securing at least 7.5 million tonnes of carbon.

Rehabilitation operations for 2021 were focused on eighteen bogs with the lion’s share in counties Offaly and Galway (east), followed by Longford and Roscommon. 

The county by county breakdown for 2021 was as follows:

Offaly: 2,519ha (6,224 acres); Galway: 1,563ha (3,862acres); Longford: 634ha (1,566acres); Roscommon: 354ha (875acres); Kildare: 126ha (311acres).

Bord na Móna says the achievement is part of a substantial scheme begun in 2021 aimed at securing a vast peatlands carbon store, lowering emissions, and reviving the carbon capture function of peatlands.

The scheme is supported by €108 million of government and European funding and €18 million from Bord na Móna. The company is using a range of enhanced rehabilitation measures to transform extensive areas of peatlands across the midlands of Ireland.  

The total amount of peatlands now rehabilitated and restored by Bord na Móna is more than 25,000 hectares (over 61,000 acres). This is an area equivalent of about 19,600 GAA pitches that if put end to end would stretch from Dublin to Moscow (over 2,800 km).  

Bord na Móna says this growing area is creating a rich mosaic of biodiverse peatlands, incorporating important carbon sinks and stores.

Theses extensive areas of restored and rehabilitated bogs are increasing biodiversity and providing new habitats for thousands of native plant and animal species. 

The return of nesting Cranes to a Bord na Móna peatland after 300 years show the enormous future potential for nature to renew and restore itself. Ecologists are confident that the rewetting and rehabilitation programme will deliver similar wins in the future.

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