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Data from: Global hotspots for coastal ecosystem-based adaptation

Citation

Jones, Holly P. et al. (2020), Data from: Global hotspots for coastal ecosystem-based adaptation , Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.7291/D1TQ1P

Abstract

Helping the world’s coastal communities adapt to climate change impacts requires evaluating the vulnerability of coastal communities and assessing adaptation options. This includes understanding the potential for ‘natural’ infrastructure (ecosystems and the biodiversity that underpins them) to reduce communities’ vulnerability, alongside more traditional ‘hard’ infrastructure approaches. Here we present a spatially explicit global evaluation of the vulnerability of coastal-dwelling human populations to key climate change exposures and explore the potential for coastal ecosystems to help people adapt to climate change (ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA)). We find that mangroves and coral reefs are particularly well situated to help people cope with current weather extremes, a function that will only increase in importance as people adapt to climate change now and in coming decades. We find that around 30.9 million people living within 2km of the coast are highly vulnerable to tropical storms and sea-level rise (SLR). Mangroves and coral reefs overlap these threats to at least 5.3 and 3.4 million people, respectively, with substantial potential to dissipate storm surges and improve resilience against SLR effects. Significant co-benefits from mangroves also accrue, with 896 million metric tons of carbon stored in their soils and above- and below-ground biomass. Our framework offers a tool for prioritizing ‘hotspots’ of coastal EbA potential for further, national and local analyses to quantify risk reduction and, thereby, guide investment in coastal ecosystems to help people adapt to climate change. In doing so, it underscores the global role that conserving and restoring ecosystems can play in protecting human lives and livelihoods, as well as biodiversity, in the face of climate change.

Methods

Details of how these data were processed can be found in the Methods and Supplementary Materials of Jones et al. Global hotspots for coastal ecosystem-based adaptation 2020 (PLOS ONE).

Usage Notes

A brief summary of the dataset(s) follows:

data_grid_10min.shp (vector shapefile; Geograpihc Coordinate System, WGS 1984 ): global grid (10 minute resolution) constrained to the cells within the low elevation coastal zone as defined in  Jones et al. Global hotspots for coastal ecosystem-based adaptation 2020 (PLOS ONE).  Attribute fields include
ID=unique cell identifier;
country=country name;
country_iso=country code (ISO alpha 3);
man_ha=mangrove extent in cell (hectares);
coral_ha=coral reef extent in cell (hectares);
pop=total population in cell (within 25 km of coast);
pop_2km=total population in cell (within 2 km of coast);
ac=adaptive capacity of cell;
sensit=sensitivity of cell;
expos=exposure of cell;
vulner=vulnerability of cell;
bm_high=carbon biomass estimate (upper bound) in cell;
bm_low=carbon biomass estimate (lower bound) in cell;.