UEL projects at COP26
There are two exciting UEL projects in Glasgow for COP26. We have the world famous Pollution Pods by Michael Pinsky, artist and UEL reader, which are no stranger to the conference as the Pods featured at COP25.
New for COP26 is the Peatland Pavilion which has been co-developed by UEL, the Global Peatlands Initiative, Wetlands International, Greifswald Mire Centre, IUCN UK Peatlands Programme and the United Nations Environment Programme.
Peatland covers 3 per cent of the earth and can be found on every continent. Yet they have often been overlooked during the climate change debate, and it’s only in recent years that they have started to receive significant international recognition because of their role as major global stores of soil carbon.
Peatland takes carbon out of the atmosphere as carbon dioxide (CO2) during the photosynthesis process. Due mainly to agriculture, many areas of peatland have been destroyed, however work is now being done to restore areas of peatland as a natural defence to rising CO2 emissions.
Richard Lindsay, head of environmental and conservation research, Jack Clough, research assistant for the Sustainable Research Institute (SRI), and master’s students at the University have been heavily involved in creating both the physical and virtual Peatland Pavilion.
The pavilion at COP26 aims to raise awareness and become a hub for collaboration around peatland policy issues, research, best practice and innovations.
Richard Lindsay said, "COP26 is all about solving our climate problem, and one of the biggest problems for the climate is what we call our Cinderella habitat, peatlands.
"They are invisible as the peat is below ground and the problem is because they are invisible, we keep damaging them. So, what we have now is peatlands that are part of the problem, but they can be part of the solution as they can contain more carbon per hector than rainforests."