Australia includes seagrass in National Greenhouse Gas Inventory

Australia is pleased to announce the inclusion of seagrass in its National Inventory Report 2016 to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, released April 2018 using the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s 2013 Supplement to the 2006 Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories: Wetlands (the Wetlands Supplement).

This is the first time Australia has reported on emissions and/or removals from all categories of coastal blue carbon ecosystems (mangroves, tidal marshes and seagrasses) in its Inventory. Mangroves and tidal marshes were first reported using the Wetlands Supplement in the 2015 Report. The Wetlands Supplement provides new guidance on calculating emissions and removals from wetland ecosystems not previously included in the 2006 IPCC Guidelines, and allows the significant carbon stocks of coastal blue carbon ecosystems to be captured in Inventories.

Reporting on wetlands is voluntary, however implementation of the Wetlands Supplement is growing as countries become increasingly aware of the role of coastal blue carbon ecosystems in combatting climate change and improving coastal resilience.

Australia prioritised the inclusion of coastal wetlands in the Inventory due to their significant land area and importance to Australia’s environment, and is taking a stepwise approach to implementation of the Wetlands Supplement. This approach is improving Australia’s understanding of coastal ecosystems and their management, including for climate mitigation and adaptation outcomes.

The International Partnership for Blue Carbon is hosting a technical exchange for governments in Brisbane, Australia on 12–13 July 2018. Further information can be found here.