The importance of wetland carbon dynamics to society: insight from the second state of the carbon cycle science report
The Second State of the Carbon Cycle Report (SOCCR2) culminated in 19 chapters that spanned all North American sectors – from Energy Systems to Agriculture and Land Use – known to be important for understanding carbon (C) cycling and accounting. Wetlands, both inland and coastal, were found to be significant components of C fluxes along the terrestrial to aquatic hydrologic continuum. In this chapter, we synthesize the role of wetlands in the overall C footprint of North America (from Canada to Mexico) as one metric of the societal values placed on these terrestrial-aquatic interfaces. We also summarize the effects of management activities and climate change on the wetland C cycle and give some perspectives on the current and future importance of wetlands to society.