Wetlands International and Greifswald University will present the first ever overview of peat carbon stocks and drainage related carbon dioxide emissions of all 170 peat-containing countries world wide at the UN climate talks (UN-FCCC) Barcelona on Wednesday 4 November. Splitting the global 550 Gigaton carbon storage and alarming 2 Gton annual CO2 emissions from peatlands to national levels, these new figures turn the official total emission figures of many countries upside down.
This is the first time ever that an overview per country is provided of the peat carbon stocks and carbon dioxide emissions caused by loss of the peat-soil carbon of these wetland ecosystems (figures 1990 and 2008). So far, figures were only available for some countries; with a rough estimate for the global situation.
This detailed work responds to a call by countries at previous UN climate talks for emission data caused by the Land Use Change and Forestry sector. This is crucial for the current negotiations on climate policies (REDD, LULUCF) to reduce these emissions.
The report will present shocking figures for some countries. For these, peat emission figures are for instance larger than the total emissions so far officially reported. It also illustrates that specific countries contain incredible organic carbon stocks in the form of peat. Reclamation of the wetland areas of these countries would strongly influence global GHG emission figures.
Peatland emissions are currently unaddressed by the Kyoto Protocol. Wetlands International is advocating for a climate treaty that contains incentives to reduce emissions from peatlands through mandatory accounting in Annex 1 countries and through including (peat) soils in a future REDD scheme for non-Annex 1 countries.
How to obtain our report
On Wednesday 4 November at 10 am, a press summary with the main findings and the report will be presented to the press in Barcelona. Press not in Barcelona can on request receive a digital copy of the summary and report at the same time. Contact our Headquarters for this.
Press conference information:
Time and date: Wednesday 4 November 2009, 10am
Location: press conference room UNFCCC Climate talks, Barcelona
For more information:
Tel: +31 619092641
At our headquarters:
+31 (0)6 5060 1917
Peatlands & CO2 Emissions
Research on Peat & CO2
Our work at the UN Climate Convention
The release of the Global Peatland CO2 Picture at the Barcelona Climate Talks (Nov. 2009) was covered by:
AFP: Asia peatland loss 'helps drive warming': scientists
Reuters: Study finds vital peatlands neglected & Study Suggests Peat CO2 Credits More Valuable
Bloomberg: Indonesia Leads in Emitting CO2 From Peat
The Economist: For peat's sake, stop
ANP (Dutch): CO2-uitstoot opdrogend moeras onderschat
The Irish Times: Study focuses on key role of peat bogs