Native Plant Conservation Campaign News: Scientific groups: conservation and restoration of forests, wetlands, and other native plant communities are best weapons against climate change.
November 8, 2018
Conservation and restoration of healthy native plant communities is fundamental to the battle against catastrophic climate change, recent reports and statements from scientific organizations agree.
A recent report
by the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine found that strategies that conserve and restore forests, coastal native plant communities and otherwise use photosynthesis to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere are among the most promising weapons against accelerating climate change.
The Academy recommended immediate investment in research into and scaling up of “Negative Emissions Technologies that remove and sequester carbon dioxide from the air”. They identified five of the most promising of these technologies for urgent action. These include conservation and restoration of forests and of coastal plant communities such as mangrove forests and coastal marshes. These strategies also have the added benefit of helping to protect communities from floods, hurricanes and other catastrophic storms.
The National Academy report joined two other recent statements from scientists released in conjunction with the alarming October 8 special report
by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
The world’s forests contain more carbon than exploitable oil, gas, and coal deposits, hence avoiding forest carbon emissions is just as urgent as halting fossil fuel use.
Forests currently remove around a quarter of the CO2 humans add to the atmosphere, keeping climate change from getting even worse.
Similarly, international wetlands conservation experts
have launched an accreditation process
for cities that conserve wetlands. The program seeks to conserve and restore wetlands to protect cities from the effects of climate change. The goal is to safeguard and take advantage of flood control and other benefits
(wetland ecosystem services) delivered to cities, societies and economies. According to a BBC News report
“Wetlands Vital to Protect Cities”, under this program, 18 cities around the world have so far been recognized as conserving their wetlands.