Forests on peatlands – solutions for reducing emissions and increasing of carbon sinks
1 939 191 EUR
Annalea Lohila, Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (INAR) of the University of Helsinki
Unit and faculty
Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering
Faculty of Technology
Reaching the Carbon-neutral Finland 2035 goal requires not only reducing fossil emissions but also reducing emissions from agriculture, forestry and other land use, and maintaining and strengthening carbon sinks and storage. Forests and soils play an important role in mitigating climate change, as measures to address them are currently the only effective means of sequestering and storing carbon from the climate.
Influential actions are now being taken through the power of cooperation. The aim is to increase the carbon sequestration of the land use sector by at least 3 million tonnes of CO2 eq. by 2035. New solutions for agriculture, forestry, and other land use will contribute significantly to reducing emissions and increasing carbon sinks and storage.
Information on the effects of restoration and afforestation
Forests on peatlands – solutions for reducing emissions and increasing of carbon sinks (TURNEE) -project assesses the emission reduction potential possible to achieve by restoring fertile peatland forests and afforesting cutaway peatlands. In addition to the climate impacts, the project will study the impacts on hydrology, the factors affecting them, and the connections between hydrology and greenhouse gas flux. We study, measure and model only land use changes that promote biodiversity, or do not reduce it for the least.
Extensive measures at multiple locations
We measure greenhouse gas exchange, water quality and water table level on many restored and natural mires and afforested cutaway peatlands of different ages. In addition, peat properties of all sites are studied by the Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Unit of the University of Oulu. The project will establish two new intensive measuring sites where the exchange of greenhouse gases will be continuously observed. One of them is the world's first station set up in a peatland ecosystem to measure total climate impacts (including albedo, volatile vapors and aerosol particles).
Information on overall effects through modelling
With the help of spatial data analysis and collected data, we will model overall climate and hydrological effects of feasible land use practices at both provincial and national levels for decades to come. We interact closely with key stakeholders and produce much-needed information on climate-wise use of peatlands, e.g. for ELY centres, advisory organizations and the greenhouse gas inventory.
Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Unit as an hydrology expert
We at the Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Unit of the University of Oulu are responsible for the hydrological data analysis for the project. We produce and compile information on the effects of restoration of forested and afforestation of cutaway peatlands on hydrology and on the risk of nutrient and carbon leaching. Additionally we produce information on the physical and biogeochemical properties of the soil in the sites, which can be used to make more accurate risk assessments of the emissions resulting from afforestation and restoration measures.
Collaborative knowledge and understanding
In addition to Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Unit of the University of Oulu, the project involves the University of Helsinki Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (INAR), the Finnish Meteorological Institute, the Department of Forest Sciences of the University of Helsinki, and the Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences.
Forests on peatlands – solutions for reducing emissions and increasing of carbon sinks (TURNEE) project is a part of the Catch the carbon - Climate solutions in the land use sector climate measure, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture, forestry and other land use. More about the measure here: https://mmm.fi/en/climate-plan-for-the-land-use-sector
Measurements from Naarasneva intensive measurement station established in TURNEE-project can be seen from the link below. First link in the page leads you to Naarasneva station's Eddy covariance results and the second link to meteorological and soil parameter data page.
Measurement station measures overall climate impact of an obsolete cutaway peatland about to be afforested.