Sheep help cut carbon emissions in Dales
When staff in the Yorkshire Dales were planning a new national park head office in 2006, naturally they wanted to make it as energy efficient as possible.
So the new building, named Yoredale and situated just down the road from the previous headquarters in Bainbridge, is very well insulated.
One part of the complex, the meeting room, has been built into a grassy bank and has a hay meadow on its roof.
This provides it with natural insulation and also helps reduce the building's impact on the landscape. It also provides grazing for local sheep!
Other green features include having a ground source heat pump built under the new car park, which extracts warmth from the soil for the building's underfloor heating, and using locally-sourced stone wherever possible.
Plugging peat gaps in the Dales
Recent work to combat climate change in the Yorkshire Dales National Park includes a scheme to 'plug' drainage channels (known as grips) to help reduce the amount of water draining out of the Park's peat soils.
It's part of the work being undertaken by the Yorkshire Peat Partnership (see below).
Tell us about the scheme
- workmen are using mechanical diggers to extract large 'plugs' of peat to help restore the Park's 50,000 hectares of peat soil
- these are being used to block up hundreds of kilometres of the artificial drainage channels which were put into the moorland in the 1970s
Why is it being introduced?
Blocking the grips helps slow down the flow of rainwater off the hills so that the moors can go back to their natural role: acting like a giant sponge peat soaks up rainwater and carbon. As the water table rises it encourages the growth of sphagnum moss, which actually starts to take carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere - eventually forming new peat.
Want to find out more?
The Yorkshire Peat Partnership is working with moorland owners to restore and then conserve huge swathes of upland peatland habitats.
As well as the Yorkshire Dales National Park, members of the Partnership are the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, Natural England, National Trust, Environment Agency and North York Moors National Park Authority.
It also receives support from Nidderdale AONB, Pennine Prospects, the Environment Agency, the National Trust, the Moorland Association, the National Farmers Union and Yorkshire Dales Rivers Trust.
- Find out more about the Yorkshire Peat Partnership
Yoredale's green roof in facts and figures
The 'eco' grass roof - features and benefits:
The ground source heat pump works by:
The innovations at the Yoredale office has saved the Authority:
*Based on May 2010 oil prices
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