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Australian vegetated coastal ecosystems as global hotspots for climate change mitigation


Serrano, O and Lovelock, CE and Atwood, TB and Macreadie, PI and Canto, R and Phinn, S and Arias-Ortiz, A and Bai, L and Baldock, J and Bedulli, C and Carnell, P and Connolly, RM and Donaldson, P and Esteban, A and Ewers Lewis, CJ and Eyre, BD and Hayes, MA and Horwitz, P and Hutley, LB and Kavazos, CRJ and Kelleway, JJ and Kendrick, GA and Kilminster, K and Lafratta, A and Lee, S and Lavery, S and Maher, DT and Marba, N and Masque, P and Mateo, MA and Mount, RE and Ralph, PJ and Roelfsema, C and Rozaimi, M and Ruhon, R and Salinas, C and Samper-Villarreal, J and Sanderman, J and Sanders, CJ and Santos, I and Sharples, C and Steven, ADL and Cannard, T and Trevathan-Tackett, SM and Duarte, CM, Australian vegetated coastal ecosystems as global hotspots for climate change mitigation, Nature Communications, 10, (1) Article 4313. ISSN 2041-1723 (2019) [Refereed Article]

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The Author(s) 2019. Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

DOI: doi:10.1038/s41467-019-12176-8


Policies aiming to preserve vegetated coastal ecosystems (VCE; tidal marshes, mangroves and seagrasses) to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions require national assessments of blue carbon resources. Here, we present organic carbon (C) storage in VCE across Australian climate regions and estimate potential annual CO2 emission benefits of VCE conservation and restoration. Australia contributes 511% of the C stored in VCE globally (70185 Tg C in aboveground biomass, and 1,0551,540 Tg C in the upper 1 m of soils). Potential CO2 emissions from current VCE losses are estimated at 2.13.1 Tg CO2-e yr-1, increasing annual CO2 emissions from land use change in Australia by 1221%. This assessment, the most comprehensive for any nation to-date, demonstrates the potential of conservation and restoration of VCE to underpin national policy development for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:coastal ecosystems, global hotspots, climate change
Research Division:Environmental Sciences
Research Group:Climate change impacts and adaptation
Research Field:Ecological impacts of climate change and ecological adaptation
Objective Division:Environmental Policy, Climate Change and Natural Hazards
Objective Group:Understanding climate change
Objective Field:Effects of climate change on Australia (excl. social impacts)
UTAS Author:Mount, RE (Dr Richard Mount)
UTAS Author:Sharples, C (Dr Chris Sharples)
ID Code:152014
Year Published:2019
Web of Science® Times Cited:87
Deposited By:Geography and Spatial Science
Deposited On:2022-08-10
Last Modified:2022-09-01
Downloads:1 View Download Statistics

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