RESTORATION AND CONSERVATION INNOVATION
We are currently in the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, with restoration and conservation a key component of many nations’ activities to limit climate change under the Paris Agreement. Coastal ecosystems have gone undergone dramatic declines, so action is needed to conserve the remaining areas and identify opportunities for restoration. Our research develops tools to guide restoration and conservation efforts, putting data in the hands of those implementing on-the-ground work.
Coastal ecosystems support multiple ecosystem services including coastal protection, fisheries enhancement, timber and fuelwood production, tourism areas and climate regulation. This has stimulated increased interest in their conservation and restoration both to protect biodiversity and safeguard and increase provision of these benefits to human well-being. Our research aims to quantify these ecosystem service values at a range of scales, from global maps of saltmarsh soil carbon, to a local scale synthesis of the value of mangroves to support site scale conservation.
PEOPLE AND NATURE
The conservation and restoration of global wetlands is vital for both people and nature. A holistic, interdisciplinary approach to this is crucial. Wetlands are important to people in multiple ways including storm protection, providing livelihoods, recreation, and having cultural significance. The need for healthy, productive, biodiverse and resilient ecosystems that produce environmental, economic, and social benefits for people is increasingly being understood by wider society.
COASTAL ECOSYSTEM MAPPING
We are in a golden age of access to remote sensing data and technological advancement. Despite this, globally consistent maps of the extent, change and condition of many coastal ecosystems are severely lacking. This baseline data is critical to identifying areas of conservation concern and developing management strategies for the protection and restoration.