Peatland Forestry and Surface Water Quality in Finland

Hannu Mannerkoski

Proceedings of the 14th International Peat Congress


ditch-network-maintenance, drainage, fertilization, leaching, sedimentation

Mannerkoski 2012: Peatland Forestry and Surface Water Quality in Finland


Theme VII. Ecology and management on forested peatlands


The drainage of peatlands for forestry started in Finland about 100 years ago, and to the present date, approximately 55,000 km2 have been drained. Forest research first started to study the effects of peatland drainage on the amount and quality of discharge water in the late 1960s when concern was raised about increased flooding and sedimentation in the lakes surrounded by drained peatlands. Subsequent studies have proved these supposed impacts. Peatland forestry also includes fertilization, different cuttings, and site preparation during the regeneration of tree stands, and the maintenance of drainage systems. All of these can have adverse effects on the quality of discharge water unless active preventative measures have been taken.