The general objective of peatland rehabilitation is to ensure environmental stabilisation of the former industrial peat production areas. Enhanced rehabilitation focuses on optimising suitable hydrological conditions (stable water levels close to the surface) by blocking production field drains, re-profiling peat fields, forming low bunds and other wetland measures that will be planned in detail. This will create soggy peatland conditions that will be naturally colonised by plants and animals and will allow compatible peatland habitats to redevelop. It will also slow water movement across these bogs during rainfall events.
Decommissioning of the bogs will facilitate the rehabilitation of an area. Decommissioning covers all areas of general clean-up within the bogs including removal of stock (harvested peat), removal of associated machinery, removal of infrastructure, bog pumps (where feasible), lifting of rail line and silt control.
Enhanced decommissioning and rehabilitation will prioritise the development of peat-forming habitats, where possible. Varying environmental conditions such as peat depth, water level, pH and nutrient status also mean that a mosaic of cutaway peatland habitats including embryonic bog, birch woodland, scrub, heath, fen and wetland will develop. Different bogs have different starting points. The objective for sites with deep residual peat will be to re-establish embryonic Sphagnum-rich bog communities, where possible. Raised bog Sphagnum species require water-logged acidic conditions to thrive and Sphagnum moss, in particular, is a key species that sequesters carbon.
Bord na Móna brings over 40 years of experience in peatland rehabilitation that informs these improvements and is also informed by consultation with relevant bodies and groups. We are committed to acting in an environmentally responsible manner by rehabilitating and decommissioning these bogs and in our future management of these lands.
Bord na Móna will strive to ensure that the decommissioning and rehabilitation will have minimal impacts on local land-owners and communities and this website is part of the engagement with all stakeholders throughout this process.