Through their capacity to store carbon, peatlands play critical roles in the local, regional and global regulation of climate. Despite only covering the northern tip of Scotland, the Flow Country peatlands contain almost three time as much carbon as there is in all UK’s forests. They also support unique species and have international biodiversity importance, and they play a key part in water regulations in many upland catchments.
Our research aims to understand how all these elements interact, how peatlands function, which requires team work across a range of disciplines. In the end, our research will help predict how the Flow Country peatlands will respond to disturbances caused by human actions and to future changes in climate, and will inform how best to conserve, restore and protect them.