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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Bog recovery in northeastern Estonia after the reduction of atmospheric pollution input

Published source details

Paal J., Vellak K., Liira J. & Karofeld E. (2009) Bog recovery in northeastern Estonia after the reduction of atmospheric pollution input. Restoration Ecology, 18, 387-400

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Remove pollutants from waste gases before they enter the environment Peatland Conservation

A before-and-after study in 1990–2007 in two raised bogs in Estonia (Paal et al. 2009) reported that after installing improved dust filters in industrial plants (along with a general reduction in emissions), total plant species richness decreased but Sphagnum moss species richness increased. These results were not tested for statistical significance. In the late 1980s/early 1990s, when bogs were polluted by calcium-rich ash, there were 91–123 plant species and nine Sphagnum species/0.1 ha. In 2007, after pollution was reduced, there were only 43–58 plant species but 14 Sphagnum species/0.1 ha. Throughout the 1990s, emissions of calcium-rich ash fell by 80%, partly through fitting improved dust filters but partly through reduced industrial activity. The study does not distinguish between the effects of these changes. In 2007, plant species were recorded in a 0.1 ha plot in each bog. Species richness was compared to published records from the late 1980s/early 1990s.

(Summarised by Nigel Taylor)