I just visited an amazing exhibition at the University of St Andrews’ Wardlaw Museum all about one of my favourite things . . . PEAT!! The smell of peat in the air reminds me of childhood – holidays on the Isle of Lewis, staying in the MacDonald’s croft at Tobson.
This exhibition explores the importance of peatlands in Scotland and across the world. For Peatlands’ Sake aims to show how vital the resource is to our planet and to communities around the globe. As a major carbon store, the protection of peatlands is vital in the fight against the climate emergency and their destruction could lead to carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere in catastrophic quantities. Not only that, but communities around the world live on and by peatlands and rely on the natural resources that are intertwined with these ecosystems for their way of life.
Wardlaw Museum’s Eilidh Lawrence, who has been central to the exhibition’s development, said: “Peatlands hold the same amount of carbon as the planet’s plants and vegetation, including our rainforests, and yet they cover a lot less of the Earth’s surface. It’s really important they are protected.“We hope visitors to the exhibition will see that small actions can make a difference in our fight against climate change and have a positive impact on communities around the world. That could be anything from buying peat-free compost or asking your garden centre to stock it, to avoiding palm oil, which is often grown on degraded peatlands, and supporting conservation efforts taking place on our own doorstep.”