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IUCN Briefing Notes on Peatlands

Category: briefings, Date: 04 Nov 2014

IUCN Briefing Notes on different aspects of Peatlands. Written and prepared by Richard Lindsay, Richard Birnie and Jack Clough.

These briefing notes are aimed at policy makers, practitioners and academics to help explain the ecological processes that underpin peatland function.  Understanding the ecology of peatlands is essential when investigating the impacts of human activity on peatlands, interpreting research findings and planning the recovery of damaged peatlands.

These briefs have been produced following a major process of review and comment building on an original document: Lindsay, R. 2010 ‘Peatbogs and Carbon: a Critical Synthesis’  University of East London. published by RSPB, Sandy.  To view the document online please click here.

We are grateful to Scottish Natural Heritage, Natural England, Natural Resources Wales, the Forestry Commission RSPB Scotland and the Peter de Haan Charitable Trust for funding support.


These briefings are a modified version to the hard copies handed out at our Conference in Inverness October 2014 since we have incorporated suggestions made to us at the Conference and have improved the readablity of the documents.

1. Definitions

2. Biodiversity

3. Drainage

4. Forestry

5. Domestic Peat Cutting

6. Commercial Peat Extraction

7. Grazing and Trampling

8. Burning

9. Erosion

10. Climate Change

11. Peatland Restoration

12. Tracks on Peatland

13. Atmospheric Pollution

Please check back regularly for updates and new additions. We have also collated all briefings into one downloadable PDF for convenience, please see below.