Peatlands are an important part of the global ecosystem, as they contain 90% out of the water. These wetlands store water supplies, preventing floods and providing essential water supplies for the plant world to survive. Peatlands are, essentially, wetlands made out of decaying remains of plants. They also store a large amount of carbon, which, once released from the land, transforms into carbon-dioxide. Carbon dioxide is one of the most distributed toxic gasses in the atmosphere, and it makes a significant portion amongst gasses that cause the green garden effect. Peatlands are found in almost all countries across the globe, although the largest percentage of these wetlands is concentrated in South-East Asia. The devastation of peatlands can easily measure with natural disasters as they are not only natural habitats to many endangered species, but the exposure of the land to air and heat allows stored carbon to be released into the atmosphere.
Wildfires are amongst the most devastating factors to cause damage to natural peatlands. Not only do wildfires devastate the plant and animal world in the struck areas, but they can also cause large amounts of carbon-dioxide to release into the atmosphere. These wetlands are naturally hit by wildfires in the areas of South-East Asia every year, however, due to the influence of human exploitation and climate change, the wildfires keep increasing in their destructiveness.
Floods are another factor to contribute to air pollution from peatlands. Once these areas are flooded, the soil releases carbon into the water, polluting it further. In the post-flood period, since the plant world covering the soil is devastated, the soil is exposed to the air and heat, which contributes to additional pollution to the ecosystems.
Another factor to damage peatlands and cause pollution to the environment is human exploitation. Normally, peatlands are fertile enough to sustain agriculture, however, in many parts of the world, peatlands have been virtually extinct because of fertilization of the land. The human factor is also responsible for an increased number of farm animals feeding on the plants that grow on this land, and causing devastation of plant life. Once the devastation of plant life causes exposure of the soil to the air, further pollution takes place.
Climate change is a global factor that influences the devastation of peatlands and causes it to emit carbon-dioxide. Climate change acts as a factor of damage in many ways, be it the increased average temperature during summers, or excessive amounts of rainfall causing erosion of the plants, as well as floods. All of these factors, joined together, make a devastating impact onto the peatlands, thus causing further damage and pollution to the ecosystems.