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Benthic-based contributions to climate change mitigation and adaptation

Benthic-based contributions to climate change mitigation and adaptation
Benthic-based contributions to climate change mitigation and adaptation
Innovative solutions to improve the condition and resilience of ecosystems are needed to address societal challenges and pave the way towards a climate-resilient future. Nature-based solutions offer the potential to protect, sustainably manage and restore natural or modified ecosystems while providing multiple other benefits for health, the economy, society and the environment. However, the implementation of nature-based solutions stems from a discourse that is almost exclusively derived from a terrestrial and urban context and assumes that risk reduction is resolved locally. We argue that this position ignores the importance of complex ecological interactions across a range of temporal and spatial scales and misses the substantive contribution from marine ecosystems, which are notably absent from most climate mitigation and adaptation strategies that extend beyond coastal disaster management. Here, we consider the potential of sediment-dwelling fauna and flora to inform and support nature-based solutions, and how the ecology of benthic environments can enhance adaptation plans. We illustrate our thesis with examples of practice that are generating, or have the potential to deliver, transformative change and discuss where further innovation might be applied. Finally, we take a reflective look at the realized and potential capacity of benthic-based solutions to contribute to adaptation plans and offer our perspectives on the suitability and shortcomings of past achievements and the prospective rewards from sensible prioritization of future research.
Habitat restoration, Marine protection, Natural capital, Nature-based solutions, Offshore development, Rewilding
0962-8436
1-11
Solan, Martin
c28b294a-1db6-4677-8eab-bd8d6221fecf
Bennett, Elena M.
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Mumby, Peter J.
e1e4795a-9505-4e5d-ab03-f95ca645e627
Leyland, Julian
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Godbold, Jasmin A.
df6da569-e7ea-43ca-8a95-a563829fb88a
Solan, Martin
c28b294a-1db6-4677-8eab-bd8d6221fecf
Bennett, Elena M.
69f7fe96-8dfd-48d8-9abb-e46fd8980bcf
Mumby, Peter J.
e1e4795a-9505-4e5d-ab03-f95ca645e627
Leyland, Julian
6b1bb9b9-f3d5-4f40-8dd3-232139510e15
Godbold, Jasmin A.
df6da569-e7ea-43ca-8a95-a563829fb88a

Solan, Martin, Bennett, Elena M., Mumby, Peter J., Leyland, Julian and Godbold, Jasmin A. (2020) Benthic-based contributions to climate change mitigation and adaptation. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 375 (1794), 1-11, [20190107]. (doi:10.1098/rstb.2019.0107).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Innovative solutions to improve the condition and resilience of ecosystems are needed to address societal challenges and pave the way towards a climate-resilient future. Nature-based solutions offer the potential to protect, sustainably manage and restore natural or modified ecosystems while providing multiple other benefits for health, the economy, society and the environment. However, the implementation of nature-based solutions stems from a discourse that is almost exclusively derived from a terrestrial and urban context and assumes that risk reduction is resolved locally. We argue that this position ignores the importance of complex ecological interactions across a range of temporal and spatial scales and misses the substantive contribution from marine ecosystems, which are notably absent from most climate mitigation and adaptation strategies that extend beyond coastal disaster management. Here, we consider the potential of sediment-dwelling fauna and flora to inform and support nature-based solutions, and how the ecology of benthic environments can enhance adaptation plans. We illustrate our thesis with examples of practice that are generating, or have the potential to deliver, transformative change and discuss where further innovation might be applied. Finally, we take a reflective look at the realized and potential capacity of benthic-based solutions to contribute to adaptation plans and offer our perspectives on the suitability and shortcomings of past achievements and the prospective rewards from sensible prioritization of future research.

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Accepted/In Press date: 27 November 2019
e-pub ahead of print date: 27 January 2020
Published date: March 2020
Keywords: Habitat restoration, Marine protection, Natural capital, Nature-based solutions, Offshore development, Rewilding

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 439518
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/439518
ISSN: 0962-8436
PURE UUID: 909e73c4-1747-4c75-9fa5-feff789cefaa
ORCID for Martin Solan: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-9924-5574
ORCID for Julian Leyland: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3419-9949
ORCID for Jasmin A. Godbold: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-5558-8188

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Date deposited: 24 Apr 2020 16:44
Last modified: 26 Nov 2021 02:58

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Contributors

Author: Martin Solan ORCID iD
Author: Elena M. Bennett
Author: Peter J. Mumby
Author: Julian Leyland ORCID iD

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