€600k Peatlands restoration scheme launched in Wicklow

More details about title image -> Example of a peatlands restoration project in County Wicklow. The €600k rewetting initiative announced by Transport Research Arena will restore 100 hectares of degraded blanket bog in Wicklow Mountains National Park, in a collaboration bringing together TRA, Transport Infrastructure Ireland, the National Parks and Wildlife Service and the Department of Transport. 

The organisers of Transport Research Arena (TRA2024) have launched a €600,000 peatlands rewetting project in County Wicklow as preparations continue for the conference taking place in Dublin in April. TRA is the largest European event to address all aspects of transport and mobility and it is estimated that bringing it to Dublin will be worth €7 million to the Irish economy.

Peatlands restoration scheme in Wicklow

The rewetting initiative will restore 100 hectares of degraded blanket bog in Wicklow Mountains National Park, in a collaboration bringing together TRA2024, Transport Infrastructure Ireland, the National Parks and Wildlife Service and the Department of Transport.

Healthy peatlands are the most efficient, long-term and concentrated carbon stores and sinks in our planet’s biosphere. One hectare of restored blanket bog avoids 10 tonnes of carbon loss per year, and with a lifetime of thousands of years it will carry on capturing carbon long into the future.

Director of TRA2024 Dublin Dr Albert Daly says making a positive environmental impact is important to the organisers: “Hosting TRA2024 in Dublin is a fantastic opportunity and as an island nation, we are conscious that bringing people here contributes to the event’s carbon footprint. This major Peatland Restoration project – which will prevent the release of nearly 1000 tonnes of carbon into the atmosphere annually for many years to come – serves as a reminder of the importance of developing low-carbon transport, which is one of the priorities at TRA2024”.

Dr Billy O’Keeffe, senior geologist/hydrogeologist at TII, who will lead the initiative, said: “This Wetlands Restoration Project harnesses the power of one of our greatest natural assets. In addition to reducing carbon emissions, healthy blanket bogs can improve water quality, prevent flooding and reduce the risk of drought and wildfires. They are also richly biodiverse, offering habitats for a massive array of plants, birds and insects.”

The TRA2024 Dublin event will run from 15 – 18 April and will discuss all modes of transport including road, rail, air, water and cross modality, in urban, inter-urban and rural settings. The importance of developing sustainable transport is a significant part of the event programme, while one of the four days is fully dedicated to discussing themes of decarbonisation and improving transport sustainability.

Attendees at the event in the RDS will include two European Commissioners and three Director Generals, Government representatives from the EU, UK and US, and officials from leading global businesses including Google, Collins Aerospace, BMW, SNCF and Stena.

Over 1,200 submissions from researchers around the globe have already been received and over 940 of these will be presented throughout the week in Dublin as researchers plot a way to a more sustainable transport future for the planet.

TRA2024 is supported by the European Commission and the Irish Government. For more information and to register, please visit https://traconference.eu/
See more breaking stories here.