Partners from Belgium, Germany, Denmark, Netherlands and Great Britain met in the Broads National Park this week to kick off a brand new 5.5m euro project. The Broads Authority is the lead partner of CANAPE (Creating A New Approach to Peatland Ecosystems).
The matched funded project will give the Broads Authority over 700,000 euros from the European Regional Development Fund and will enable the Broads Authority to continue to deliver the ‘Hickling Vision’ and restore more areas of eroded reed bed at Hickling Broad. The project will see innovative geo-textile materials used to form a bunded wall into which sediments dredged from Hickling will be pumped and then planted with local reeds. The funding will also aim to use healthy peatlands in the Broads National Park to help regulate global climate change as the peatland naturally absorbs CO2 from the atmosphere when correctly maintained.
It is an opportunity for people working in the Broads to transfer new and innovative concepts about managing lowland peatlands across the North Sea region of Europe. Together partners will improve how to assess lake and peatland restoration options, as well as examining the multiple benefits of peatlands, including flood storage and carbon capture. Partners will also explored the creation of future jobs by the development of new wetland products and the economic benefits this approach could produce.
Senior Ecologist for the Broads Authority, Andrea Kelly said of the partnership meeting,
“This is an opportunity to share our experiences with the CANAPE partners and benefit from working across borders with people who are experienced in similar issues. We aim to test new approaches to gain wider benefits of peatlands, including carbon and water management, as well as new potential economic benefits.”
Partners described the site visits as ‘highly important’ and ‘an opportunity for cooperation’ with Peter Hahn from the Ministry of Environment and Food in Denmark, saying,
“This is a valuable opportunity to exchange knowledge and most importantly to have a really positive impact upon climate change.”
The CANAPE project is an opportunity for the Broads Authority to share their knowledge of lowland peatland management with their European partners. The event marks the beginning of a long term conservation partnership, to work for the benefit of the Broads National Park and the wider global climate.
Thursday 12 October 2017