The study represents results on remote sensing methods based evaluation of land use and land use changes in former and existing peat extraction areas in Latvia. The aim of the study is to elaborate activity data set for the National GHG inventory for the wetlands remaining wetlands for peat extraction. The study results provide sufficient data for application of the default emission factors for the peat extraction sites and flooded lands. Abandoned peat extraction fields, which are not yet afforested, flooded or rewetted, should be reported as peat extraction sites following a conservative approach in application of the emission factors. The study results can be used to report land use changes since 1990; however, linearized approach in calculation of the land use change may result in overestimation or underestimation of GHG emissions in certain periods of time. According to study results, the area of peat extraction sites is considerably bigger than currently reported in the National GHG inventory, mainly due to considerable areas of abandoned peat extraction fields. Flooded lands may be a significant source of emissions and should be introduced in the National GHG inventory to secure consistency of reporting. Methodology for calculation of GHG emissions from flooded lands should be also elaborated. It is also necessary to elaborate emission factors for fertile and no fertile peat extraction sites and continue work on separation of different soils in the inventory to increase accuracy of calculations.
Authors and Publishers
The Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies (until March 6, 2018 – Latvia University of Agriculture (LLU); Latvian: Latvijas Lauksaimniecības universitāte; LLU) is a university in Jelgava, Latvia, specializing in agricultural science, forestry, food technology and related areas.