Protect and restore wetlands, one of the most important, threatened, and under-appreciated ecosystems on earth.
Wetlands are the unsung heroes of the natural world. They provide food, fresh water, and livelihoods for 3 billion people and habitat for 40 percent of all wildlife species. They are found on every continent except Antarctica. They can be freshwater or saline, seasonal or permanent, inland or coastal. Wetlands filter pollution, buffer droughts, and protect against floods. They are highly efficient at storing carbon in soils, particularly coastal wetlands, which can sequester ten times more carbon than tropical forests. Wetlands are disappearing faster than any other type of ecosystem. Sixty percent have been lost worldwide and the remainder are being impacted by rising temperatures, bigger storms, and prolonged drought amplified by climate change. Wetlands are well studied. We know how to restore and protect them and must do so with urgency.