World leaders in wetlands, peatlands and biodiversity conservation and restoration and climate change met (virtually) at the Society for Ecological Restoration’s (SER) 2021 World Conference Plenary Panel on June 22nd to discuss the importance of restoring and conserving wetlands including peatlands, and other ecosystems as a critical element in our response to the climate change and biodiversity emergencies. Members of the SWS Climate Change Initiative worked closely with SER’s leadership and others to organize the Plenary Panel, which was moderated by SWS member, Professor William Moomaw. Panelists included Elizabeth Mrema, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, Dianna Kopansky, Coordinator of UNEP-led Global Peatlands Initiative, Jane Madwick, CEO of Wetlands International, and Professor Brendan Mackey of Griffith University.
The purpose of the panel was to bring these world leaders together to explore the intersections between climate change and biodiversity loss, and the critical role that wetlands including peatlands, forests and other ecosystems play in supporting biodiversity and a stable climate. The panel discussed the joint report released on June 10th by the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPBES-IPCC), which identifies the need to address biodiversity loss and climate change as two parts of the same problem in order to succeed in addressing either one (see https://www.ipbes.net/sites/default/files/2021-06/20210609_workshop_report_embargo_3pm_CEST_10_june_0.pdf). The report states, “Restoring carbon- and species-rich ecosystems on land and in the ocean is also highly effective for both climate change mitigation and biodiversity, with large adaptation co-benefits.”
Read the complete SER press release on the 2021 World Conference Plenary Panel here: https://www.ser.org/news/570501/Leaders-Urge-Prioritization-of-Wetland-Restoration-to-Fight-Climate-Change-and-Biodiversity-Loss.htm