Wetlands, the environmental miracle against climate change

May 19 2021

This is a translation of the article “Los humedales, el milagro medioambiental contra el cambio climático” published on the EFEverde website about the Life Wetlands4Climate.

Wetlands, traditionally considered as wastelands and unhealthy areas, are actually environmentally very valuable for the multiple services they offer, including the capture and storage of atmospheric CO2.

The study and enhancement of these spaces is one of the objectives of the Life Wetlands4Climate, a project that aims to vindicate the role of wetlands as carbon sinks and reducers of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

This project, which will be carried out in wetlands of three Spanish autonomous communities until June 30, 2024, with the support of the European Commission and the coordination of the Global Nature Foundation (FGN), is based on the idea that the good management of wetlands not only contributes to the conservation of biodiversity, but can also help in the fight against climate change. On the contrary, an inadequate management of these wetlands, lakes or seasonal ponds, turns these ecosystems into emitters of greenhouse gases and, consequently, great enemies for the environment

LIFE Wetlands4Climate will analyze how much carbon a wetland is actually capable of sequestering based on its conservation status and will identify which management measures are the most appropriate for each wetland so that they achieve their maximum storage and climate mitigation capacity.

The sampling works will be carried out on pilot plots located in ten wetlands in the Valencian Community, Castilla y León, and Castilla-La Mancha. Different vegetation, soil and water management assessments will be implemented to see how the carbon balances behave in each wetland with respect to each of these measures, such as mowing, controlled grazing, management of water levels, or soil tillage.

Source: MEDWET