This week, Bord na Móna launched their Peatland Restoration Plan on its land in Ireland. The initiative was launched as the Cabinet approved funding of €108 million from the Climate Action Fund for the major peat restoration plan in the Midlands. The restoration and rehabilitation measures will be overseen by Bord na Móna, which is contributing an addition €18m to the project.
Bord na Móna plan to maximise the carbon capture and storage potential of peatlands in efforts to help Ireland address the climate and biodiversity emergencies. As detailed on the Bord na Móna website, the peatlands restoration and rehabilitation works will:
- Immediately focus on 80,000 acres/ 33,000ha of Bord na Móna bogs.
- Protect the 109m tonne carbon store in these bogs and sequester a further 3.2m tonnes of GHGs
- Recreate native habitats, rich in biodiversity and cultural significance
- Reverse the fragmentation of other habitats and the loss of biodiversity corridors within the wider landscape
- Sequester carbon in peatlands in perpetuity
- Protect and enhance water quality and associated aquatic ecosystems
- Provide attractive amenities, to promote health and well-being and opportunities for outdoor learning amongst local communities
- Enhance air quality
- Sustain 350 roles in operations, engineering and ecology in restoration operations working on Bord na Móna and third-party peatlands.
- Create walking tracks, trails and other amenities where appropriate
- Continue work started in June with full-scale operations commencing from April 2021
The Environment and Climate Minister Eamon Ryan announced the funding and said.
“I am delighted that we are providing more than €100m in funding for this milestone project. Bog rehabilitation and remediation is a wonderful example of Just Transition in action, where workers who previously harvested peat for power generation will now be the custodians of our bogs.“
The new operations will create over 300 operational, engineering and technical jobs, most of which will be taken up by employees who were until recently employed in peat harvesting activities. The project is due to be fully operational by next April.
The full press release from Bord na Móna can be found here: https://www.bordnamona.ie/company/news/articles/100-million-tonne-carbon-store-secured-under-major-peatland-restoration-plan/