Germany to help Russia to restore peat bogs

Germany to help Russia to restore peat bogs

14 October 2011

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Russia / Germany — Germany will help Russia to restore peat bogs. On the 14th October, the final project to turn about 42,000 hectares of dried-out territory into swamp will be presented. It was worked out by Russian and German specialists. Moreover, Germany’s
Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety will provide 5 million Euros to implement the project.

Russia adopted a programme to restore peat bogs in the summer 2010 after abnormal heat and heavy fires in the country’s central region. At the time, fires spread affecting about 200,000 hectares. In June this year, the Russian and German governments agreed on working together to avert such situations. Foreign experts will consult their Russian colleagues and will be involved in implementing the programme, says director of the Institute of Forest Science, Andrei Sirin.

“Germany has acquired broad experience in watering peat bogs and assessing ecological consequences of this measure. It had similar large territories, and German specialists irrigated them. They have international experience too. Nevertheless, Russia is not a backward country in this area. In these circumstances, joint work is always fruitful. For example, German specialists have learned to grow some crops in watered lands. For Russia, this is not an urgent issue at present. However, we are ready to use any new technology,” says Andrei Sirin.

The irrigation and watering peat bogs are useful procedures from the standpoint of ecology. Russia and many other countries have successfully implemented such projects, says Andrei Sirin.

“This is favourable for biodiversity and restoration of the environment forming functions of peat bogs. This will help to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases,” Andrei Sirin said.

Meanwhile, Russia is implementing its own projects for watering peat bogs. For one, over 100 million Euros have been allocated for this purpose. All this work will be completed by 2013. This year the number of fires in the region reduced four times.

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