Lakes and Wetlands

Some of the worlds most threatened ecosystems are lakes and wetlands. Water has many interconnecting roles in the Earth system, and as such environmental problems tend to compound themselves in aquatic ecosystems.

Wetlands have been targeted for drainage throughout the years by land reclamation projects. Only recently have the huge environmental benefits provided by wetlands been uncovered, and their preservation looked into. Some studies even suggest that the world’s wetlands represent a larger carbon sink than do its forests. Wetlands also act as giant scrub brushes, cleaning pollutants from the water as it flows through them.

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Full Citation

Lehner, B., Döll, P. (2001): A global wetlands, lakes and reservoirs data set. Unpublished manuscript.

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Global | Asia | Africa | Europe | North America | Oceania | South America

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This dataset can be found in the following categories:


 Water resources