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The Cultural Significance of Carbon-storing Peatlands to Amazonian Communities

May 28, 2019 |

Peruvian Ashaninka people. Ministério da Cultura [CC BY 2.0 (]

This article was originally published on 

“A group of UK and Peruvian researchers have carried out the first detailed study of how rural communities interact with peatlands in the Peruvian Amazon, a landscape that is one of the world’s largest stores of carbon.

Tropical peatlands, found in Southeast Asia, Africa, Central and South America, play an important, and, until recently, underappreciated role for the global climate system, due to their capacity to process and store large amounts of carbon. Across the world, peat covers just three per cent of the land’s surface, but stores one third of the Earth’s soil carbon.

The peatlands are sparsely populated but have been inhabited for centuries by indigenous and Spanish-descended populations. Even now, most communities are only accessible by boat.

Now, a group of researchers led by a University of Cambridge geographer have carried out the first detailed survey of how local communities view and interact with these important landscapes. Their results are reported in the journal Biological Conservation…”

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