Increase investment in peatland restoration
Increase investment in peatland restoration and set a peatland restoration target.
The Scottish Government has committed £250m over the ten years 2020-30 for peatland restoration. So about £25m/yr and with an assumed cost of £1,000/ha that £25m could theoretically pay for approximately 25,000ha of restoration activity per year. Which suggests that the funding would possibly deliver around 250,000ha of total restoration by 2030. Yet we know that we have 1.9m ha of degraded peatland, so the government investment needs to be much greater.
At the same time, we know that while the Committee on Climate Change suggests that the government needs to restore 45,000ha/year, the government target is 20,000ha and that it is also failing to deliver that.
The Scottish Government should set a peatland restoration target of at least 45,000ha/yr, aiming to increase this over time, and significantly increase the funding available through existing schemes.
As well as higher ambition in terms of area restored, much higher levels of funding are required. Co‑benefits include creating jobs and protecting nature.
For further information:
- Transformational peatland strategy needed to tackle Scotland’s nature and climate crisis, RSPB Scotland, 2020, https://www.rspb.org.uk/about-the-rspb/about-us/media-centre/press-releases/transformational-peatland-strategy-needed-to-tackle-scotlands-nature-and-climate-crisis/