Peatlands are very important for carbon storage and the habitats they support, with peat surveys for developments on sites with peatland required to enable the potential loss and disturbance of peat to be estimated and minimised.
Generally peat surveys fall into two categories; low resolution surveys and detailed surveys.
Low resolution surveys on a 100m by 100m grid basis are generally undertaken across the whole development site to provide information on peat depth variability, identify areas where deep peat is present, and identify steep slopes (greater than 100), which need to be avoided due the risk of peat landslides. Peat depth measurements are undertaken at each grid point.
Detailed surveys on a 10m by 10m grid basis around the centre of each infrastructure feature (e.g. a wind turbine or electricity substation) or at 50m intervals with 10m right angled offsets.along linear features such as a proposed track. Peat depth measurements are undertaken at each grid point along with peat characteristics (peat type, erosion features and slope and drainage patterns).
Results are presented in map form to identify areas of ‘deep peat’ (peat depth >0.5m) across the site, with raw data provided in tabular form to allow future analysis.