Wetlands are a “biological super system” hosting a vital reservoir of biodiversity potential. Conserving wetlands and protecting their biodiversity is instrumental in upholding the ecosystem services wetlands provide. These ecosystem services of flood control, food supply, clean water, recreational areas and more are major elements in Virginia’s economy and cultural society. Current models projecting climate change impacts on the Virginian coastline predict sea-level rise to be incompatible with rate of migration and adaptation needed for wetlands. Existing wetland conservation efforts are lacking the required action to combat these imminent problems. Land acquisition is essential to accommodate wetland migration to ensure their health and survival. The implementation of an Adopt-A-Wetland Program would accomplish this goal while simultaneously increasing public awareness for wetland biodiversity. The proposed program would focus on marketing strategies persuading target parties (fisheries, academia, similarly minded non-profits, individuals, and major corporations) to “adopt” wetland areas. Coastal property is too expensive for the government to allocate budget towards such an endeavor. This program will overcome this obstacle by capitalizing on the persuasion tactics inherent to marketing schemes, the current trends of environmentally friendly consumer preferences, and target parties’ individual stake in the health of local wetlands. The Adopt-A-Wetland program will combine efforts, financial and other, from a range of parties to pool the resources needed to acquire appropriate land to save the wetlands.
Poster session for the Environmental Studies Senior Seminar.
Hines, Lindsey. "The Adopt-A-Wetland Program." Poster for Environmental Studies Senior Seminar, University of Richmond, April 21, 2016.