Restoration targets for peat bogs will increase from 600 hectares to 1.8K hectares a year to combat the climate crisis. In particular, efforts are being made to help protect birds such as the curlew, which rely on peat bog habitats. There’s been a rapid decline in sightings of this wading bird in Wales, with numbers falling by 90 per cent in the last 20 years.
Peatlands in Wales, as in many other parts of the UK and Europe, have been damaged by extraction, burning and overgrazing. Bogs are rare ecosystems that are home to a wealth of plants, birds and insects and store three times more carbon than a forest.
Through our For Peat’s Sake campaign, we’ve been calling for a ban on peat for horticultural use. We believe digging out peat for garden compost is environmental vandalism, but the horticultural industry has ignored targets to use alternatives in potting composts.
In August, the UK government announced sales of peat for use in private gardens and allotments will be banned in England from 2024.