Carbon Connects

Carbon Connects is a research project of the professorship Organic Matter for Soil Fertility and Functionality.

The issue

Globally, peatlands store 1.4 trillion tones of carbon which is equivalent to 75 % of all carbon in the atmosphere - twice the carbon stored in forests! Today, one third of the global CO2 emissions are caused by draining and/or burning these peatlands for agricultural use. There is an urgent need for sustainable alternatives and innovative business models for farmers and land managers of rewetted peatlands (paludiculture).

The project

Carbon Connects aims to reduce the high carbon footprint of peatland soils in Northwest Europe by introducing new bio-based business models developed for sustainable land management practices. Peatland restoration is an important component of the world’s journey to net-zero carbon emissions.
When healthy, peatlands are incredible carbon stores and potential carbon sinks – yet, if allowed to degrade, they threaten biodiversity, release pollutants into the environment and thwart climate change mitigation and adaptation goals everywhere.


Carbon Connects work to stimulate the implementation of new bio-based business models developed for sustainable land management practices. We collect examples of successful models, support knowledge sharing through farmer-to-farmer learning programmes and facilitate land use. Ten pilot sites have been developed to field test promising models in Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Germany, UK and Ireland. We promote a market for sustainable bio-based (innovative) construction materials, fuel sources and food products cultivated on peatland in NW-Europe as well as a carbon and blue-credit scheme system for wet agriculture.

Take a look at this site for more information.

Professor: Valentina Sechi
Project duration: 2018 - 2023
Project partners: European Landowners Organization, Phillipps Universität Marburg, LIT, Radboud Universiteit, Durham County Council, Staatsbosbeheer, LTO Noord, ILVO, Canal & River Trust, Waterschap De Dommel, Waterschap Aa en Maas, VLM, Agricultures & territoires, Wear Rivers Trust, The Rivers Trust and VHL University of Applied Sciences (VHL).

Brochure Carbon Connects Download(pdf - 3.5MB)
Booklet Peatlands across Europe Download(pdf - 4.6MB)