Presentation on theme: "Moorlands as Indicators of Climate Change Initiative Welcome to MICCI This is a project designed for schools to investigate the interrelationship between."— Presentation transcript:
Moorlands as Indicators of Climate Change Initiative Welcome to MICCI This is a project designed for schools to investigate the interrelationship between the moorland landscape, people and climate change Chris Robinson Learning and Discovery Officer PDNPA
High Open Countryside No normal farming Created by humans So What is ‘Moorland’?
Characteristics and Types HEIGHT: >250m above sea level SOIL: Peat up to 10 m thick Vegetation Peat Gritstone bedrock WINDY & WET: >1000mm/year All types have impoverished flora Harsh physical conditions Poor soil structure and nutrient status 1. Heather moorland - most common, on gentler, relatively dry slopes 2. Grass moorland - coarse grasses such as mat grass, wet areas, peat <20cm allowing grass roots to penetrate 3. Cotton grass moorland - rare, wet areas, peat >70cm 4. Sphagnum bog - formerly 18 species, but pollution has reduced these to 3, of which only 1 is common. Very wet and acid. An absorbent, spongy mass. Note that 13% of world’s blanket bog is in UK Q1
“The warming of the climate is unequivocal” The United Nations IPCC report 2007 (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) Climate Change
Peat Weathering of bedrock Rain Photosynthesis Decomposition Dissolved Inorganic Carbon DIC Particulate Organic Carbon POC Dissolved Organic Carbon DOC CO2 INPUTSCO2 OUTPUTS The Moorland Carbon Cycle Fluvial Flux (removed by water)
A healthy moor Carbon flux prediction models (Dark Peak area) Best case scenarioWorst case scenario = Carbon loss = Carbon sink Q2
Source: Sea-viewing Wide Field-of-View Sensor (SeaWiFS) Project, NASA- GSFC, and ORBIMAGE, 18 April 2003 Fire on Bleaklow Satellite view of Northern Britain
Fire, erosion and pollution can turn a healthy moor into an unhealthy one! Aerial view of fire damage and subsequent erosion on Bleaklow
Some schools involved in MICCI so far! Royston High Honley High Oakwood TC Brinsworth Comp Silverdale Hope Valley College Lady Manners Heanorgate St John Houghton West Hill Littlemoss High Bramhall Glossopdale New Mills Chapel High Painsley Catholic College
Physical Parameters Peat Depth Water table height % DOC pH Biodiversity including % bare ground Nothing extraordinary but at a very large number of sites at the same time and open to suggestions.
Oakwood Technology College (Rotherham) Strines Moor Brinsworth School (Rotherham) at Ringinglow
MICCI School‘s Results (eg. plant distribution and altitude) 207m 341m507m Altitude Chatsworth Staffordshire Moorlands Black Hill Up to date results can be found on our website: www.peakdistrict.gov.uk
The National Parks North Pennines AONB Moors for the Future The Scientists Manchester University ANPA ENPAA The Welsh Assembly IUCN Peatland programme Yorkshire Peat Partnership Exmoor Mires Project OPAL ESRC NSEW 2011 2012 New to 2013
It’s not all bad though! The Moors for the Future partnership have managed to reseed this area of erosion on Sykes Moor and many others Large area of bare peat
What sort of conservation work will our experiments inform? Youth Rangers using Geojute fabric to stabilise planting Discoveries you make about the state of the peat will help scientists from Moors for the Future decide on the most appropriate conservation methods for the moorland.
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