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A framework for assessing the vulnerability of wetlands to climate change

This technical report examines methods for assessing the vulnerability of wetlands — particularly in the context of climate change — as part of a broader set of methodologies for wetland inventory, assessment and monitoring. It gives an overview of available approaches to assessing vulnerability, including the frameworks available to incorporate climate change risks into development planning and projects.

The report identifies challenges and information gaps that have emerged from vulnerability assessments, including "multiple vulnerabilities" a lack of reliable data or long-term monitoring, and differing perceptions of the need to address wetland vulnerability. It concludes that to provide the information needed for sound management vulnerability assessments will need a better understanding of the complexity of interactive pressures that affect wetlands, such as land use and pollution; to develop appropriate metrics to assess vulnerability to multiple pressures; and to bolster data on the sensitivity and adaptive capacity of wetlands.