How saving marine life can help fight climate change: The role of MPAs
Environment Climate Change Marine life

How saving marine life can help fight climate change: The role of MPAs

Dr. Lindy Whitehouse
Dr. Lindy Whitehouse

In 10 seconds? Conserving marine areas can help in the fight against climate change by protecting biodiversity which helps the ocean to sequester more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and foster adaptation to changing environments.

Ok, but how does protecting marine life help remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere? When we think of protecting marine life we picture saving fish, dolphins, and other large marine animals but we often forget that the ocean is home to a lot of plant life too which is being destroyed as the oceans are trawled for fish. As we know, plants and algae use carbon dioxide to make their own food, thus removing it from the atmosphere. Marine protected areas are closed areas where all the different types of marine life can live undisturbed, and this is important for protecting biodiversity. A recent study showed just how important these areas are for carbon sequestration, especially those that are home to seagrass and mangroves.

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