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Wetland4Change to Address Climate Change with Wetlands, Kickoff in Sofia

Last week, hosted by the University of Forestry in Sofia, the kickoff of "Wetland4Change" took place, marking the start of an ambitious Interreg Euro-MED project within the Natural Heritage Mission aimed at combating climate change with wetland-based solutions.  

Acknowledging the crucial role that these areas play in carbon sequestration, greenhouse gas reduction, and flood prevention, Wetland4Change promotes the development and testing of two case studies: one on CO2 storage, namely how to measure the efficiency of ponds and lagoons in terms of Carbon Sequestration, and the other on flood risk prevention, namely what measures through wetlands can mitigate the risk due to the effects of climate change. The measurement and monitoring tests of the two case studies will occur in 5 pilot sites located in Bulgaria, Greece, France, Spain, and Italy. MEDSEA will thus take care of the experimentation at the pilot site in the Oristano area and coordinate international communication, as well as contribute support on multiple fronts: from the training of stakeholders and political decision-makers to the dissemination of results. But also, and above all, on the environmental education of wetland areas: why are these areas today considered as the best natural solution to climate change? And, again: what are the expected and more frequent extreme events due to climate changes for which wetlands can be the most effective natural barrier?  

During the two days in Sofia earlier in April, we gathered under the auspices of our main project partner, the University of Forestry in Bulgaria, to share strategies, models, and measurement tools. Our common mission? To enhance the adoption of science-based knowledge and governance mechanisms. Through comprehensive assessments, guidance, capacity building, and experience exchange, Wetlands4Change aims to validate transferable solutions focused on the conservation and restoration of wetlands for effective climate adaptation and mitigation.  

“This effort promises to strengthen the capabilities of wetland managers and policymakers, enabling them to address the climate crisis at both local and international levels more effectively”, explains Manuela Puddu, project lead Wetland4Change for MEDSEA and expert on wetlands ecosystems. Partners, in addition to the Faculty of Ecology and Landscape Architecture of the University of Forestry in Bulgaria: the Goulandris Natural History Museum/Greek Biotope - Wetland Centre; the Cavanilles Institute of Biodiversity and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Valencia and the University of Malaga, Spain; Tour du Valat in France. 



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