Scientists move quickly on recognition of peatlands and mangroves

When peat swamps and mangroves are drained, converted, and burned, large quantities of stored carbon are released into the atmosphere, contributing to climate change, says Daniel Murdiyarso, a principal scientist with the Center for International Forestry Research. CIFOR/James Maiden

When peat swamps and mangroves are drained, converted, and burned, large quantities of stored carbon are released into the atmosphere, contributing to climate change, says Daniel Murdiyarso, a principal scientist with the Center for International Forestry Research. CIFOR/James Maiden

With tropical peatlands and mangroves finally being recognized globally as vital in the fight against climate change, scientists are wasting no time in urging governments to develop national guidelines for measuring, verifying and reporting (MRV) of carbon stocks and emissions in these ecosystems.

A month before U.N. climate talks began in Warsaw, Poland, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) executive committee adopted and accepted the so-called Wetlands Supplement in Batumi, Georgia. This decision paves the way for developing countries to integrate protection of tropical peatlands and mangroves into their climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies.

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