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Wetland restoration in natural protected area in Ukraine

2017-02-01

Wetland restoration in natural protected area in Ukraine

In village Ivano-Frankove (Lvivska oblast) work on restoration the peat bog “Zalyvky” in the Nature reserve "Roztochchia" was conducted. Wetlands areas in this territory suffered catastrophic changes because drying has been made in the last century. That is why today in this area the danger of fires in peatlands dramatically increased, soils productivity decreased with increasing level of mineralization. To prevent this hazard and conserve the peat bog “Zalyvky”, activists laid the water pipes and built four dams. Thereby the flow rate and the speed of groundwater draining are slowing. This allows improving the water level in the bog and helps its recovering.

NGO "Public Institute of Environmental Protection" supported by the National Ecological Center of Ukraine (NECU) under the Climate Forum East II conducted work on restoration the peat bog “Zalyvky” in the Nature reserve "Roztochchia" (village Ivano-Frankove, Lvivska oblast). The total area of the renewable bog is 140 ha.

Peatlands cover at most only 3% of the planet, but they store a quarter or perhaps even a third of the world’s soil carbon. The mining or “quarrying” of peat for horticulture, agriculture and drainage, along with climate change, has made a growing number of the world’s peat bogs increasingly vulnerable to fire. Wetlands areas in “Zalyvky” suffered catastrophic changes because drying has been made in the last century. That is why today in this area the danger of fires in peatlands dramatically increased, soils productivity decreased with increasing level of mineralization.

To prevent this hazard and conserve the peat bog “Zalyvky”, activists laid the water pipes with a diameter of 40 cm in the upper part of the bog.  Thereby water from the river Stavchanka back into the peat bogs and distributed throughout the bog territory by the system of many channels.

Also in one of the central canal four dams were built to raise the water level in it an average of 20 - 40 cm. Thanks to this the flow rate and the speed of groundwater draining are slowing. This allows improving the water level in the bog and helps its recovering. According to ecologists, these measures will help to stabilize the environmental situation, will increase the productivity in reclaimed land and will significantly reduce their fire risk.