Top stories

  • On the misuse of nature-based carbon ‘offsets’

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    Nature-based solutions (NbS*) are being misused for greenwashing. Promoting NbS as carbon 'offsets' while continuing business as usual in fossil fuel use is not a solution to climate change. In fact, it can encourage continued or even increased fossil fuel consumption leading to more emissions o [...] read more
  • What Can Nature offer COP26, and vice versa?

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    ‘Nature is our life support system' says Professor Nathalie Seddon in a new video from the University of Oxford, 'and to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, it is critical that we work with nature'. Professor Seddon is one of around 30 official ‘friends’ of COP26, is a member of the U [...] read more
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Project Seagrass – restoring seagrass as an NbS in the UK

Despite being the most overlooked marine habitat, seagrass meadows provide a number of important ecosystem services: they are nurseries for young fish that support about 20% of the world’s largest 25 fisheries, they sequester carbon about 35 times faster than tropical forests, they reduce coastal erosion, and are unique, biodiverse ecosystems. Of the UK’s 155 [...] Read more
January 13, 2020
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Floating agriculture in Bangladesh

During our NbS workshop in Bangladesh, we learnt about floating agriculture – a traditional practice that is going to scale in Bangladesh, allowing farmers to maintain or increase agricultural productivity and nutritional diversity in the face of increased monsoon season flooding. It involves weaving together plants, most commonly the invasive water hyacinth, to form floating [...] Read more
January 13, 2020

Impacts of forests and forestation on hydrological services in the Andes: A systematic review

Bonnesoeur et al (2019) Forest Ecology and Management This paper is a synthesis of 155 studies on the effects of afforestation (tree-planting on naturally non-forested land) in the Andes on hydrology, erosion and landslide reduction. In contrast to public perception in the Andes, the review found that, overall, non-native tree plantations, and to a lesser extent [...] Read more
January 13, 2020

Nature-based innovation systems

van der Jagt et al (2019) Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions To build a sustainable world, transformation across many sectors is required and technology is thought to play a major enabling role. This has prompted the development of the Technological Innovation System framework, which focuses on the relationship between the social and technological systems. In this [...] Read more
January 13, 2020

Oyster breakwater reefs promote adjacent mudflat stability and salt marsh growth in a monsoon dominated subtropical coast

Chowdhury et al (2019) Scientific Reports Three self-sustaining breakwater oyster reefs were established on an eroding mudflat on Kutubdia Island, Bangladesh. Over four seasons, it was found that the 0.6m-high reefs attenuated wave energy by 95-100% when water levels were up to around 0.5m, whilst wave energy was partially dissipated with water levels of 0.5-1.0m depending [...] Read more
January 11, 2020
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PODCAST: COP25 – what just happened?

Nat Seddon featured in a ‘reaction’ episode from Futuremakers to discuss what was decided in Madrid, where hope lies and what needs to happen to make COP26 in Glasgow a success in 2020. Listen here.  
December 20, 2019
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PODCAST: Nature or technology to address climate change?

In the latest Futuremakers podcast, Nat Seddon discusses the pros and cons of NbS vs. technology with Oxford colleagues Jim Hall and Helen Gavin.
December 8, 2019
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NbSI director on UK political debate

For the first time ever, UK political parties took part in a debate on climate change in the runup to the December 2019 general election. The Conservative Party did not  attend, but the remaining major political parties presented positive views and policies with respect to climate change. Prof Nathalie Seddon was one of three scientific [...] Read more
November 28, 2019
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IPCC Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate

This latest IPCC report describes observed and projected impacts of climate change on our oceans, coastal zones, and cryosphere (polar and mountain ecosystems), and the human communities that rely on them. It reports widespread shrinking of ice sheets, glaciers, and reduction in snow cover, and the associated rise of global mean sea level. Such changes [...] Read more
November 18, 2019
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Climate Change and Land: An IPCC special report on climate change, desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management, food security, and greenhouse gas fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems

This IPCC report highlights the importance of our lands as both a source and a sink for GHGs. It estimates that around 23% of total GHG emissions are derived from the way we currently use land (agriculture, forestry, and other uses), while natural land processes absorb 29% of total CO2 emissions. The report assesses how [...] Read more
November 18, 2019

Core principles for successfully implementing and upscaling Nature-based Solutions

Cohen-Shacham et al (2019) Environmental Science and Policy As NbS gain traction in environment and climate policy it is vital that the term is used and applied consistently. With the goal of improving the operational framework for NbS, this paper compares IUCN’s preliminary “NbS Principles” to those of five other ecosystembased concepts (the Ecosystem Approach, Forest [...] Read more
November 18, 2019

Impacts of Land-Based Greenhouse Gas Removal Options on Ecosystem Services and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Smith et al (2019) Ann Revs Ecol System This study compares the impacts of five different options for land-based Greenhouse Gas Removal (GGR) on ecosystem services and their contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It suggests universally positive effects of soil carbon sequestration and wetland restoration, whereas options such as bioenergy with carbon capture [...] Read more
November 18, 2019

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