My name is Jamie Walker, and I am a 2nd year biology undergraduate at the University of Oxford. I am also part of Re-Peat, who I'm representing on this platform!
RE-PEAT is an international youth-led organisation, with members in the Netherlands, Italy, UK, Ireland, Germany, Estonia. Some of us study peatlands at a university level, some of us work with peat "in the field", and many of us are simply peat enthusiasts.
Peatlands are the largest terrestrial carbon store, clean our drinking water, help mitigate flooding, preserve astonishing archaeological remains, and provide a habitat for rare species with fascinating adaptations to the particular conditions of peatlands. Despite all this, peatlands are often overlooked (did you know peatlands are found in 180 countries?) or worse, they are deliberately degraded: 15% of peatlands worldwide have been drained, with the number much higher in some countries. Degraded peatlands are not able to provide the ecosystem services listed above, which rely on a water table that is high for the majority of the time.
Our goal is to push for a 'peatland paradigm shift', where the perception of peatlands by the public, decision-makers and stakeholders moves from 'empty wasteland' to 'fascinating, precious ecosystem'. We aim to do this through a strategy incorporating three main strands: education, collaboration, and an active process of re-imagining.
Peat-Fest is the perfect example of this strategy in action, and it's just around the corner on the 29th May! Peat-Fest is a 24hr online festival, with participants from all over the world, completely dedicated to peatlands! You can expect awesome talks - such as Peter McCoy, founder of Radical Mycology, talking on the fungi of peatlands, and world-expert on peatlands Hans Joosten - as well as games, the 'bog exhibition', and an opportunity to connect with other attendees and others in the peat world!
If this sounds cool then register for tickets here: Peat-Fest 2021 Tickets, Sat, May 29, 2021 at 12:00 AM | Eventbrite I can't wait to see some of you there!!
I, and everyone at Re-Peat, are looking forward to connecting with individuals and groups in the wider conservation world through WildHub. Thanks for having us :)
Meet the rest of the Re-Peat team here: RE-PEAT members | RE-PEAT