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Decision support framework for peatland protection, the establishment of new woodland and re-establishment of existing woodland on peatland in England


This is a decision framework for deciding where trees can and cannot be planted in relation to peat and peaty soils, in order to be eligible for the English Woodland Creation grant. The framework takes account of the peat depth and/or distance to nearby peatlands, as well as other factors such as hydrology, designations, and the type of trees that can be planted. Broadly, woodland creation will not be approved on areas of soil organic matter content more than 30% or peat greater than 30 cm deep and hydrologically
linked surrounding areas. There is also a framework for deciding whether it is appropriate to replant or regenerate felled woodland sites where peat depth is more than 30cm.


Guidance type/project stage

  • Ecosystem creation
  • Implementation
  • Ecosystem management
  • Planning
  • Ecosystem restoration


  • Peatland
  • Woodland

Challenges addressed

  • Biodiversity
  • Climate change mitigation

Source | Defra, Forestry Commission and Natural England

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