Sussex Wetland Conference: Harriett Orr

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Wetlands and Climate Change

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  • Wetlands clearly depend on water and will bb affected by changes in climate. There could be direct changes in water availability particularly in summer direct and indirect for example through greater evaporation and droughting in hotter summers
  • Wetland vision for England was established by partners concerned with wetland management and biodiversity conservation. Map shows dark where wetlands currently exist and light where they could be developed Wetlands are important for the habitat they provide and if there are more and bigger wetlands that are more connected this may help wetland species adapt to climate change Wetlands also provide other ecosystem goods and services such as flood attenuation, water quality regulation and carbon sequestration
  • Sussex Wetland Conference: Harriett Orr

    1. 1. Wetlands and Climate Change Harriet Orr Research Scientist, Climate Change, Evidence Directorate Mike Acreman Wetland Hydrologist, Centre For Ecology and Hydrology 6 th January 2012
    2. 2. Adapting Wetlands to Climate Change: a toolkit for wetland managers
    3. 3. Wetlands are likely to be vulnerable
    4. 4. Why a wetland tool? <ul><li>50 yr Wetland vision for England </li></ul><ul><ul><li>www.wetlandvision.org.uk </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Doesn’t include climate change </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity to build adaptation tool </li></ul><ul><li>Choosing sustainable wetland type </li></ul>
    5. 5. Risk-based tool-kit
    6. 6. A tool for wetland managers <ul><li>assess sensitivity of existing or new wetlands </li></ul><ul><li>Identify when to change management </li></ul><ul><li>Signpost adaptation options </li></ul>“My boss wants an estimate by this afternoon of whether our wetlands are at risk from climate change” “I am about to spend £200,000 on my wetland, I need to be certain that my plans are climate proof”
    7. 7. <ul><li>Assumption </li></ul><ul><li>Hydrology is the key characteristic of a wetland that will be impacted </li></ul>
    8. 8. location interest feature water mechanism N England river-fed Vegetation 50% 30% 20% Tier 1 tool wetland type Wet grassland
    9. 9. How do we score impact? <ul><li>Hydrology </li></ul><ul><li>Gross water balance </li></ul><ul><li>Birds </li></ul><ul><li>Flooding in winter and spring </li></ul><ul><li>Vegetation </li></ul><ul><li>Water table regime </li></ul><ul><li>Historical environment </li></ul><ul><li>Depth of water table </li></ul>
    10. 10. http://www.ceh.ac.uk/sci_programmes/Water/WetlandsandClimate.html On-line, free to use now
    11. 11. Dealing with uncertainty <ul><li>Climate projections uncertain </li></ul><ul><li>UKCP09 10,000 realisations </li></ul>
    12. 14. Feedback <ul><li>Use the tool </li></ul><ul><li>contact us if need more help </li></ul><ul><li>Tell us if it helps your decision making </li></ul><ul><li>What could be improved? </li></ul><ul><li>Can we contact you? </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>
    13. 16. Plant community trajectories
    14. 17. Wetland soil properties

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