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Wetland and Grassland Retention and Restoration as an Effective Carbon Management Strategy in Alberta

Wetland and Grassland Retention and Restoration as an Effective Carbon Management Strategy in Alberta

June 30, 2017

Alberta is host to significant carbon management and climate adaptation tools in the form of wetlands (including freshwater mineral soil wetlands in the parkland, prairie and boreal regions, and boreal peatlands) and perennial grasslands. The retention and minimization of functional impacts to these ecosystems is essential to maintaining a biological carbon store of 39-43 billion tCO2e, and sequestration of 33,535,000 tCO2e (equivalent to 7 million passenger vehicles) per year, with an estimated average value of $2.5 billion per year (Sawyer and Bataille 2017). Viresco authored a report describing the business case for the retention and minimization of functional impacts to remaining wetland and grassland ecosystems in Alberta as cost-effective carbon management tools, that also provide many additional ecosystem services that align with federal and provincial priorities. The case is also made for the restoration of historically lost ecosystems to restore lost carbon management and climate adaptation services. Existing conservation and stewardship tools are explored to provide insight into regulatory approaches, and government and NGO incentive-based options to realize wetland and grassland retention and restoration aims. To see the detailed report click here.

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