“Blue carbon” is the type of carbon that is stored by coastal wetland vegetation such as mangroves, seagrasses and salt marsh grasses. While protection and restoration of coastal ecosystems has a relatively low global mitigation potential due to their small distribution, these ecosystems can store carbon at high rates per hectare.
All of the science, maps and models in the world won’t get us closer to building resilience without land conservation on the ground. Land trusts have been leaders in protecting hard-to-protect places, like fertile lowlands, that provide critical diversity of habitat types. The lessons learned from selecting and preserving lands at scale in a shifting environment will guide our field now and for generations ahead. Thank you for your hard work and ongoing leadership and commitment to saving the lands we love!
In the United States, several land trusts are already engaging in the carbon market. Advocacy efforts that support the development of legal frameworks that enable cap and trade or carbon offsets can further expand these programs throughout the United States and connect to international efforts to decrease carbon emissions through market mechanisms.
As the USFS’s Climate Change and Water: In Brief summarizes, declining water quantity and quality are becoming common issues, especially where our demands exceed supply. Growing water demands, in turn, put aquatic resources and other services at risk because less water is available to sustain them.