Wetland conservation most effective ocean-based climate action

Imperial College Business School, London, BIP management consultancy, and strategic design studio Sketchin collaborated on research to ascertain which mitigation approaches have the greatest impact.

green trees on green grass field under blue sky during daytime

The work concluded that wetland conservation offered more potential to tackle the effects of climate change compared to other ocean-based solutions. Overall, preservation and protection of habitats such as mangroves offers a chance to sequester 144MTCo2e in Europe alone. 

According to the UN, 50% of oxygen we need is generated by our oceans and 25% of all carbon dioxide emissions are absorbed by the seas, as is 90% of the additional heat we are generating through global warming. It is widely understood that in order to begin slowing climate change the world’s oceans must be better protected, but in real terms action in this area remains slow. 

In a bid to identify where priorities should be, the Imperial-led team assessed a range of ocean conservation approaches on various criteria. These included biodiversity, pollution and carbon impact, readiness level, costs, trade-offs and scalability. Using this framework, wetland conservation proved to be the most crucial ocean-based climate solution currently available, with benefits including carbon storage and protection against rising sea levels. 

Our collaborative effort with BIP and Sketchin has shed light on the need to conserve and restore ocean ecosystems,’ said a spokesperson for Imperial College Business School, London. These thriving environments are the heartbeat of our ‘Blue Planet,’ providing the very oxygen we breathe and sustaining life as we know it. To safeguard this vital resource and drive meaningful change, private capital must be deployed. At the same time, businesses have a unique opportunity to be catalysts for ocean conservation and sustainable growth.’

More on wetlands: 

River Thames Scheme: Sustainable land use, nature recovery, flood protection

An expert’s guide to marine conservation success

Rewet dried wetlands to save 100bn tons of CO2

Image: Fuu J


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