Peat has been a staple ingredient in compost for over 50 years due to its ability to retain moisture and air, plus it is generally free of pests and disease making it seemingly ideal for seeds to germinate. The UK government, however, aims to place a total ban on the sale of peat compost by 2024 due to the detrimental impact it has on our environment.
Peat is made up of the partially decomposed remains of plants and animals, spanning thousands of years and is incredibly harmful to the environment when extracted. Peat bogs contain around 3 billion tonnes of carbon which is released into our atmosphere during the extraction process. Many peatlands are also in a state of degradation meaning they are constantly emitting CO2, further driving the climate crisis.
By 2024, the sale of peat compost to gardeners will be completely banned with ministers pledging £50 million towards the restoration of 35,000 hectares of peatland.
Craig Bennett, the chief of Wildlife Trusts, said: “Countless promises have been broken and targets missed, with the result that precious peatland habitats are still being unnecessarily destroyed in the name of gardening. The time for delay and excuses is over. The government can ensure these important carbon stores function as nature intended by banning peat sales now.”
We are proud to say that we supply peat free compost and would encourage you all to make this small change to your gardening routine – be a part of the solution, not the pollution.