Recent research has highlighted the impressive role that coastal wetlands play in capturing and storing atmospheric carbon dioxide. Many coastal wetlands, particularly saltmarsh, occur along the intertidal estuarine fringe – a zone that unfortunately bears the brunt of significant and increasing pressures from numerous recreational and commercial uses. When coastal wetlands are lost or damaged, their ability to deliver critical ecosystem services, including that of carbon storage, are lost.
Wetland Care Australia, one of Australia’s leading non- government, non-profit wetland conservation organisations, has a number of projects currently underway that are improving the health of coastal and floodplain wetlands. Results from previous projects in the far north coast have shown that, once the original soil levels are restored, these systems can quickly regenerate if given the right conditions, thus reinstating their carbon storage potential as well as the numerous other ecosystem services they deliver.