Tackling Climate Change

 

A Global Emergency

The Climate Change and Biodiversity Crisis

Existing CO2 levels in the atmosphere are already at a record high point and are causing global heating. There is now so much CO2 in the atmosphere that global heating is having dramatic effects on the environment throughout the world and significantly affecting human communities.

Excess Co2 in atmosphere

What is happening?

 We cannot rely on existing ecosystems and habitats to remove CO2 that is being added each year to the atmosphere. New ecosystems and habitats are needed that will absorb the CO2 that is being released by our activities each year and remove it from the atmosphere, as well as helping to address the biodiversity crisis.

What is the Trust doing?

Addressing our own carbon footprint

Following the Trust’s Climate Change Declaration in November 2019, we have been looking at ways to tackle the causes of climate change. For example, by reducing our own emissions and using renewable energy for our electricity supply, caring for the land that captures and stores carbon, exploring flood mitigation options and restoring wildlife habitats that are threatened.

Natural solutions to climate change

Maws Meadow (0.28 ha) and Haywood West Pasture (1.53 ha) are being allowed to change through natural succession from grassland that was cut or grazed into brambles and scrub and then to woodland. There were operational difficulties in managing both these fields as grasslands and there has been no management of Maws Meadow since 2019 and Haywood West Pasture since 2020. The change from grassland to woodland will create a complex vertical dimension that is rich in biodiversity. These new habitats will absorb more CO2 that the original grassland.

Natural solutions to climate change

Woodlands and Continuous Cover Forestry

Trees and woodlands are the ultimate weapon in fighting climate change.  They create carbon sinks which absorb atmospheric carbon and lock it up. The entire woodland ecosystem plays a huge role in locking up carbon, including the living wood, roots, leaves, deadwood, surrounding soils and its associated vegetation. 

Continuous Cover Forestry (CCF), unlike clearfell or group felling, focusses on individual tree selection to increase timber increment (growth) across all sizes of tree in the forest, rather than aiming for one canopy of even aged trees which are felled and replanted at a predetermined age. Woodlands, mostly planted by Telford Development Corporation in the 1970s, now under SGCT’s management since 1991, are gradually being converted to Continuous Cover over the accessible 60% of 220 hectares. At first there is a loss of carbon through the removal of up to 15% of tree trunks from thinning, but there will be an increase in soil carbon over time as the 30-40% of woody biomass in the branch wood breaks down into humus, as well as from increased growth of the remaining trees post thinning.

Want to know more?

SGCT & Climate Change

If you would like to read more about how the Trust is tackling climate change please click here.




Help us tackle climate change

There are many ways in which you can help us tackle climate change.  Why not become a volunteer with the Trust and help us to care for the landscape and the wildlife that depend on them.  You could leave a gift in your will or give a donation to help us continue to care for the living landscape of the Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site.

Other news

Planned Tree Works – Captain’s Coppice

Planned Tree Works – Captain’s Coppice

Light Gives Life Project We are planning to undertake roadside felling and coppicing work along the edge of Coach Road in Captain's Coppice, this work has several objectives: Safety: Removal of trees considered dangerous, for example due to squirrel damage or Ash Die...

Planned Tree Works at Lloyds Coppice

Planned Tree Works at Lloyds Coppice

LLOYDS COPPICE TREE WORKS Planning permission ref (TWC/2023/0835) Following on from the public meeting at Coalbrookdale Community Centre in November 2022 and the subsequent woodland site visits, we have listened to people’s concerns and have decided to alter the scope...