Sem Van Der Wal/EPA, via Shutterstock Protecting intact peatlands and restoring degraded ones are crucial steps if the world is to counter climate change, European researchers said Friday. In a study, they said peat bogs, wetlands that contain large amounts of carbon in the form of decaying vegetation that has built up over centuries, could help the world achieve climate goals like the limit of 2 degrees Celsius of postindustrial warming that is part of the 2015 Paris agreement. But without protection and restoration efforts, some targets for greenhouse gas emissions “would be very difficult or nearly impossible to achieve,” said Alexander Popp, an author of the study, which was published in Environmental Research Letters . Dr. Popp is a senior scientist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany, where he leads a group studying land-use issues. Peatlands exist around the world, in tropical as well as colder regions. They make up only about 3 percent of global land area, but their deep layers of peat are practically treasure chests of carbon, overall containing roughly twice as much as the world’s forests. In pristine bogs, that carbon remains soggy and intact. But when a bog is […]

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