Tropical peatlands in the Anthropocene : the present and the future
MetadataShow full item record
Tropical peatlands are a globally important carbon store. They host significant biodiversity and provide a range of other important ecosystem services, including food and medicines for local communities. Tropical peatlands are increasingly modified by humans in the rapid and transformative way typical of the “Anthropocene,” with the most significant human—driven changes to date occurring in Southeast Asia. This review synthesizes the dominant changes observed in human interactions with tropical peatlands in the last 200 years, focusing on the tropical lowland peatlands of Southeast Asia. We identify the beginning of transformative anthropogenic processes in these carbon-rich ecosystems, chart the intensification of these processes in the 20th and early 21st centuries, and assess their impacts on key ecosystem services in the present. Where data exist, we compare the tropical peatlands of Central Africa and Amazonia, which have experienced very different scales of disturbance in the recent past. We explore their global importance and how environmental pressures may affect them in the future. Finally, looking to the future, we identify ongoing efforts in peatland conservation, management, restoration, and socio-economic development, as well as areas of fruitful research toward sustainability of tropical peatlands.
Girkin , N T , Cooper , H V , Ledger , M J , O’Reilly , P , Thornton , S A , Åkesson , C , Cole , L E S , Hapsari , K A , Hawthorne , D & Roucoux , K H 2022 , ' Tropical peatlands in the Anthropocene : the present and the future ' , Anthropocene , vol. 40 , 100354 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ancene.2022.100354
Copyright © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
DescriptionFunding: This work was supported by the Natural Environment Research Council (Grant No. NE/R016860/1 and NE/R000751/1), the German Research Foundation (BE 2116/32-1) for funding KAH; the Newton-Paulet Institutional Links Grant (Grant ref. 220–2018) for part-funding KHR and LESC, and to the Leverhulme Trust for part-funding LESC (Research Grant RPG-2018-306).
Items in the St Andrews Research Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.