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UK peatlands

Eurosite Annual Meeting 2020: ‘Zooming’ in on European natural site management — from plan to action

Published by: Julie Van Offelen on November 18, 2020 Author:

UNEP had the chance to deliver another interactive session introducing the Global Peatlands Initiative  during the Eurosite Annual Meeting 2020, held from the 2nd to the 5th of November 2020.  The event, divided into four morning sessions focused on management planning, ecosystem services, peatland restoration and management, and remote sensing. These 5 key topics provide site managers with tools and information applicable in their day to day work, highlighting opportunities to achieve their local objectives more efficiently.

The GPI took participants on a journey highlighting the importance and the opportunity for Eurosite partners to lead on peatlands restoration and sustainable management.  Paul Leadbitter of the North Pennines AONB Partnership chairs the Eurosite Peatlands Restoration and Management Group who are striving to exchange information, approaches and experiences across Eurosite managers to elevate peatlands as a priority ecosystem for conservation and restoration across the EU and in the United Kingdom. . They are linking their efforts and approached and being guided by a global perspective shared by Dianna Kopansky, UNEP’s Global Peatlands Initiative Coordinator -“Peatlands, a priority ecosystem for restoration action”. The session then ‘zoomed’ in on a European (Interreg NWE Care-Peat and CarbonConnects), national (IUCN UK on the UK Peatland Code) and regional perspectives (restoration success in the Pennine PeatLIFE project by means of a video filmed by a drone) all with tremendous successes and lessons to share on what is needed to enable effective and impactful peatlands restoration, conservation and sustainable management as the day progressed.

The panelists included:

Setting the scene

  • Dianna Kopansky, United Nations Environment Programme

Peatlands, a priority ecosystem for restoration action

  • Emma Goodyer, IUCN UK Peatland Programme

Peatlands update from a national UK perspective

  • Sarah Johnson, Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Restoring the carbon storage capacity of peatlands: Demonstrating innovative technologies & techniques for carbon reduction through the Care-Peat Interreg project

  • Valentina Sechi, Van Hall Larenstein University of Applied Sciences

Carbon Connects: Implementing sustainable peatland management

  • Paul Leadbitter, North Pennines AONB Partnership

Restoration success in the Pennine PeatLIFE project

  • Hosts of the day: Anita Prosser & Paul Leadbitter
Valentina Sechi presenting the Carbon Connects Project


For more information about the event and other presentations, please see

Eurosite, a partner of the GPI since January 2020, is a network for Europe’s natural site managers bringing together non-governmental and governmental organisations, and individuals and organisations committed to their vision. Founded in 1989, the network has grown to include many members in more than 24 European countries including the UK. For more information, have a look at their website:

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