Good news of the day: Great opportunities for active climate protection in the district of Osnabrück: Venner Moor to be restored

During the site visit to Venner Moor, Starost Anna Kebschull, representatives of the various district parliamentary circles and nature conservation associations as well as the mining company were briefed on the state of the art with regard to re-wetting. / Photo. Osnabrück district (Uwe Lewandowski)

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Active Climate Protection: The district of Osnabrück, a soil extraction and voluntary nature conservation company, has declared peatland restoration as a common climate protection goal and want to start an important project in Venner Moor with large-scale rehydration. The chances are good as there are around 2,291 hectares of raised bogs in the district of Osnabrück.

During the site visit, the District Starost Anna Kebschull and representatives of the various groups of poviat councils are now explaining the current state of affairs and have been impressed by the development in large areas that are already wet again and exude a typical moorland character. Kebschull thanked the parliamentary groups for their support and was convinced that together with the county council we would be able to continue our chosen path.

Venner Moor pilot project

Although natural and living raised bogs can no longer be found in the district, there are still areas of raised bog that have been altered to varying degrees by human influence. Some of these raised bogs have already been designated nature reserves. Many peat bogs in the district of Osnabrück are used as arable land, permanent grassland or woodland. Only nature reserves are partially nurtured by removing young trees (delimbing) or by grazing. In some cases, the former peat extraction areas have already been waterlogged.

A major pilot project with Venner Moor is now about to begin. From the beginning of 2020, the permit for peat extraction expired in most of the areas approved at that time. The areas of the former quarries are now to be re-irrigated, and thus restored, taking into account the species protection aspects. This is an important step in resuming peat growth. A maintenance and development concept has now been commissioned for this purpose. To this end, the district of Osnabrück would like to develop and implement further measures together with the environmental forum, the municipality of Ostercappeln, a local soil removal company (Schwegermoor GmbH & Co. KG in cooperation with Klasmann-Deilmann). In the past, Schwegermoor successfully rehabilitated and irrigated former quarries. The company is currently continuing work in the areas at Venner Moor. For example, peat heaps have been moved to fill them in adjacent areas, in particular drainage ditches. Two ditches are also to be filled in the reserve in order to retain accumulated rainwater in the long run and to speed up re-irrigation. The current activities are supported by the Lower Nature Conservation Office, the Ecological Forum and the Haseniederung biological station. In preparation for this, deforestation work was carried out at the edge of the hiking trail for about one kilometer in order to fill the ditch with the necessary equipment.

Visible species of animals and plants

Voluntary nature protection has also been active in the poviat’s peat bogs for many years, and since 1985 it has also focused on the Venner Moor area. For many years, regular logging has been carried out here in order to re-irrigate the former raised bogs and bogs covered with mossy birch and mossy pine as part of the NABU Christmas tree campaign. The purpose of voluntary nature protection (NABU) is also to preserve or reintroduce species of animals and plants that specialize in raised bog. The Ecological Forum in the district of Osnabrück has for years been promoting activities related to irrigation and adaptation of agriculture in the sense of protecting peatlands. Far-reaching measures must be taken in the district of Osnabrück to be able to meet the climate targets currently set by the federal government for the peatland sub-segment. They affect both the Venner Moor area and other peatland areas such as Dievenmoor and Hahlener Moor. The aim is also to see if and to what extent local farmers are enthusiastic about peatland conservation measures and can be convinced.

In the future, the coordination and implementation of peatland protection projects in the Osnabrück district will also be carried out by a working group composed of representatives of individual specialist offices, as well as voluntary associations and nature protection clubs, as well as of the mining company and representatives. local municipalities and state offices will do their best to promote peatland conservation. The goal is to irrigate a certain number of peatlands annually.

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