Swamplands: Tundra Beavers, Quaking Bogs, and the Improbable World of Peat
Peatlands cover around 4% of the earth and yet they store twice as much carbon as all the world’s forests. But these remarkable landscapes are being systematically drained and degraded, with peat burned for fuel and bogs, fens, swamps and marshes destroyed to make way for oilsands, mines, farms, hydroelectric projects, and soil conditioners. If the world’s frozen peatlands continue to thaw and release carbon, these ecosystems will accelerate climate change rather than mitigate it.
Date: Wednesday January 12, 2022
Time: 11:00 to 12:00 P.M.
Effective solutions to the conservation of these lands does exist and can even be done relatively inexpensively as scientists in Great Britain and the European Union are demonstrating. But the path forward in North America requires government support, industry partnerships and public engagement.
In this presentation, Edward Struzik, journalist and fellow at Queen’s University’s Institute for Energy and Environmental Policy, will engage the audience around the vitality, diversity, and resilience of peatlands. Struzik will share elements of his global journey as he explores the often-overlooked landscapes. He’ll explain why we need to take peatlands more seriously and how we can do that.
Attendees will also receive a 30% discount code for Struzik’s new book.
‘Peatlands are so much to so many people – bofedale, bog, boglach, fen, glade, holm, marsh, mire, moor, muskeg, morass, polder, quagmire, slough, swale, and swamp. They can be dismal, dark, eerie, magical, and enchanting at the same time. They burble and smell, and light up with will-o’-the-wisps, Cajun fairies, and fireflies. They are clumsy (drunken forests) and murderous in sucking up anything that falls into them accidentally – or is thrown in as a human sacrifice. Peatlands are deceitful in that a bog can turn into a fen, and a rapidly thawing fen that is frozen for most of the year in permafrost can turn into a lake and drown a forest… Without peatlands, most of North America’s finches and warblers, and 80 percent of the waterfowl, would be forced to find another place to nest.’