Navigating the means for a better end
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Navigating the means for a better end

With its independence, Latvia is negotiating and exploring the boundaries and crossovers between capitalism, neoliberalism, socialism, civic participation all beneath the umbrella of climate change threats and the remnants of its Soviet past. What we would deem as ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ have completely different connotations and consequences in Latvia. Cooperative farming, a triumphant alternative example to intensive commercial commodity focused farming in Scotland is only just now coming back…

Peat bogs and Beavers in Latvia
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Peat bogs and Beavers in Latvia

Approximately 3.9% of Latvia’s land is covered by bogs.. Although there are several other different wetland habitat types, from western taiga to boggy woodlands. During our visit we visited 3 different bogs in several different states. The first bog we visited was a Natura 2000 site and in its current state was as a flooded wetland. The bog had been stripped, complete with railways to remove the peat and a nearby town had been created to house the workers for the peat extraction (Seda).

Slovenia 2016
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Slovenia 2016

with meadows full of wild flowers, butterflies and insects and forests composed of native trees. Despite this incredible biodiversity it was interesting to see that Slovenian nature conservation faces similar problems as we do in Scotland

Connection to Nature – Finland 2016
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Connection to Nature – Finland 2016

There seems little doubt that Finns are more connected to nature and the outdoors than Scots – reflecting that Scotland has been more of an urban society for longer. The rights and responsibilities that come with Allemansratten are firmly embedded in the Finnish psyche. There are around 500,000 forest owners with an average holding of 44ha. This is one factor that has implications for the ongoing land reform debate at home and the level of connection to nature in Scotland.

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