Blue Carbon, South Slough

Blue Carbon is a term for coastal wetlands that remove atmospheric carbon and store it in ocean sediments. Tidal marshes, tidal forested wetlands, and seagrasses sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere continuously over thousands of years, building stocks of carbon in organic-rich soils. Salt marshes, seagrasses, and mangroves make up the majority of the ocean’s vegetated habitats, and even though these cover less than 0.5% of the ocean, they may account for up to 70% of all carbon storage in ocean sediments. One of the main concerns is that the rate of loss of these important marine ecosystems is much higher than any other ecosystem on the planet. When coastal wetlands are drained and converted to terrestrial land uses, carbon is rapidly released back to the atmosphere in the form of carbon dioxide. Read more about Blue Carbon here. Click here to download the CoastView app and explore the saltmarshes of South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve.