Renaturation projects

#herzklopfafürmorgen

For our building projects in the ski region (snow-making, new transport facilities, slope corrections, etc.), we always implement ecological compensation measures in accordance with the Federal Act on the Protection of Nature and Cultural Heritage. These projects are carried out in consultation with the Office for Nature and the Environment and other specialists and in cooperation with environmental engineers and landscape planners. The following are two examples of renaturation projects with compensation measures.

Usserberg upland moor

The Usserberg upland moor was drained in the 1950s in the hope that this would expand the fertile agricultural land. Because of the soil conditions, these hopes were not met, and the upland moor today is neither productive nor fertile. Rather, the drainage severely harmed this raised bog landscape, which is very rare in Switzerland.

The objective of moor renaturation is to create a growing, peat-producing bog providing a habitat for the typical flora of the raised bog landscape. To achieve this, the regularly dying plant material should not decay fully, but should accumulate in the anaerobic soil to enrich the organic material in the bog. A permanently high level of groundwater is needed for this process, as this starves the soil of oxygen and promotes the growth of the bog and its typical flora.

It is therefore important for the enhancement of the moor landscape to interrupt the inflow and outflow of water. To do this, the subterranean drainage systems are blocked, and the aboveground ditches are dammed with wooden boards, filled with sawdust and covered with grass plugs and peat.

The Usserberg upland moor is a raised bog of national importance. The renaturation and regeneration measures implemented in summer 2015 saved the upland moor from further degeneration and considerably enhanced the landscape.

Riedboden regeneration

Before regeneration measures were introduced, there was a long ditch across the Riedboden-Beeriwald upland moor in Parpan, which drained water from the area. This created a habitat for bigger trees to grow, which, in turn, drained additional water from the moor and supplanted the rare and endangered moor fauna and typical moor flora.

To sustainably preserve the natural value of the landscape with its specialised plants and animals while also improving the moor's water retention capacity, the moor was renatured in 2009 on the instructions of Lenzerheide Bergbahnen AG.

To restore the upland moor to its original condition, it was important to ensure that Riedboden has a relatively stable and near-surface water table and no or very few trees. The ditch which drained water from the raised bog was dammed with wooden boards and then filled with peat and sawdust. The existing surface vegetation was first removed and then replanted after the ditch had been filled. The trees on the moor were also removed in two stages. Scattered mowing of the moor periphery is now done once a year, and the upland moor is groomed as and when needed.    

This may also interest you: