Energy & Environment

US partners with four other countries to advance marine areas as climate solution

climate change crisis greenhouse gas emissions carbon capture seagrass photosynthesis ph balance acidification west coast california six years data

The U.S. is partnering with the United Kingdom, Chile, Costa Rica and France to boost the use of protected ocean areas as a climate solution. 

The five nations on Wednesday launched the International Partnership on Marine Protected Areas, Biodiversity and Climate Change, which will work to give leaders information on these areas as a climate and biodiversity tool, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced. 

“The climate crisis is having profound impacts on marine ecosystems,” special climate envoy John Kerry said in a statement. “At the same time, the ocean is a source of sustainable climate solutions. These include marine protected areas, which can help build climate resilience and store carbon, while conserving biodiversity.”

The partnership’s website contains tools and case studies, and will host webinars on the role that marine protected areas, which are designated to protect habitats and species, can play in climate change and biodiversity. 

Coastal mangroves, sea grasses and salt marshes can capture and store carbon, and can sequester it at a faster rate than forests, according to NOAA.

It’s not clear whether the countries will eventually pursue specific policies to protect or designate these areas, and a NOAA spokesperson didn’t immediately respond to The Hill’s request for comment.

Tags Aquatic ecology Carbon sequestration Climate change Ecosystems John Kerry marine biology Marine protected area
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