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Carbon Sequestration and Storage by Wetlands: Implications in the Climate Change Scenario

  • Afreen J. Lolu
  • Amrik S. Ahluwalia
  • Malkiat C. Sidhu
  • Zafar A. Reshi
  • S. K. Mandotra
Chapter

Abstract

The impacts of climate change are discernible and can only be reduced through proper adaptation and mitigation techniques. Wetlands represent an excellent example of natural ecosystems providing a wide range of ecosystem services valuing billions of dollars. The service of carbon sequestration by wetlands is directly linked to greenhouse gas regulation and climate change. They are known to have higher rates of carbon sequestration than any other terrestrial ecosystem on this planet. This is because of their higher above- and belowground productivity, anoxic soil conditions, and higher sedimentation rates. The most important factor affecting carbon sequestration in wetlands is substrate availability which depends on the type and composition of vegetation. Wetland vegetation is mainly responsible for determining the detritus quality and the carbon sequestration capacity of wetlands. Unfortunately, wetlands are under various anthropogenic pressures which affect their functional capacity of acting as sinks of carbon. Climate change also has a positive feedback on their functioning. Therefore, their maintenance and conservation are imperative, for they act as an important pool to balance the deleterious impacts of climate change. If climate change is not taken care of, then wetlands may act as a source of carbon, stored by them over years, and can augment the problem. Moreover, the concept of constructed wetlands needs to be encouraged to increase the number of potential carbon sinks. Their methane emissions can also be controlled by regulating C:N and N:P ratios in their soils.

Keywords

Climate change Carbon sequestration Ecosystem services Constructed wetlands 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The corresponding author would like to thank Chairperson, Department of Botany, Panjab University, Chandigarh, for providing the necessary facilities during the course of this study.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Afreen J. Lolu
    • 1
  • Amrik S. Ahluwalia
    • 1
  • Malkiat C. Sidhu
    • 1
  • Zafar A. Reshi
    • 2
  • S. K. Mandotra
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BotanyPanjab UniversityChandigarhIndia
  2. 2.Department of BotanyUniversity of KashmirSrinagarIndia

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