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  • Forest drainage

    Many of the countries in the Baltic Sea Region rely on drainage to sustain and improve forest growth on peatlands and mineral soils. WAMBAF is now developing a mobile application to facilitate drainage work in these countries.

    One of the significant products, which is to be delivered by the WAMBAF project is a mobile application developed to support the ditch inventorying and ditch management in forests.

    The system concept elaborated by all partners assumes server software and mobile application development. The user, after loading the files containing topographic information based on LiDAR data or other measurements, will acquire finished hydrological analysis output, which will be transferred directly to the mobile application.

    The application, dedicated to both Android system and iOS system devices, will help to find ditches in the field and also edit them outright on the device. The application and the system are dedicated mainly to forest owners who do not use GIS software in their everyday work. It will have multilingual and as simple as possible interface. The work is expected to be finished by the end of next year.

    Peatlands in the Baltic Sea region

    Most of the European peatlands (Histosols) are found in the following Baltic Sea Region (BSR) countries:

    • Estonia
    • Finland
    • Latvia
    • Lithuania
    • Poland
    • Sweden

    The total area of peatlands in these countries is approximately 19.5 Mha. These countries rely on drainage to sustain and improve forest growth on peatlands and paludified mineral soils; thus, approximately 10 Mha of peatlands have been drained for forestry.

    Earlier work

    During 2016 we have evaluated following issues when it comes to forest drainage i these areas:

    • The existing knowledge of how forest drainage and water retention affect nutrient, suspended solids and mercury leaching.
    • The efficiency of current water protection measures.
    • The current tools and methods that are used to plan water protection measures in forest drainage.
    • The current legislation, certification standards, and guidelines that govern forest drainage and water retention activities in the various Baltic Sea Region countries.

    We have summarized our findings in the report Forest drainage short document. You will find it below.

    The research material consists of literature surveys and information that was received from experts in Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Sweden.

    4 January 2018