What someone values in a wetland will be influenced by their own perspective or interest. When considering wetland values, it is important to identify who benefits from what values.
The importance of a wetland depends on the type, its values and the criteria on which it is assessed. Quite often the terms ‘values’, ‘ecosystem services’ and ‘benefits’ are used interchangeably, see the Assessing wetland values and services page for further information.
Wetlands provide many services which are valued by humans but not all wetlands provide the same values or services, e.g. one wetland may be primarily valued for its natural features while other wetlands might be considered more important for their productivity or tourism values. There are a range of factors that influence what values and services a wetland provides including its location, size, type, and condition. Most wetlands have multiple values and managing wetlands effectively involves balancing these values to achieve the best outcomes economically, socially, and environmentally.
In general, wetlands are highly productive and valuable aquatic ecosystems because they:
*Blue carbon is the term used to describe the carbon stored in three coastal ecosystems: mangroves, tidal marshes, and seagrasses. Protecting and restoring blue carbon ecosystems offers opportunities for carbon sequestration and avoidance of greenhouse gas emissions. If these ecosystems are degraded or damaged, their carbon sequestration capacity may be lost or adversely affected, resulting in the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere contributing to greenhouse emissions.
Wetland on-line education modules
A series of on-line education modules, including Why are wetlands important?, has been prepared as a resource for people who want to learn more about wetlands.
Users can download and use the contents of this education module to meet their learning and training needs. This information should be used in conjunction with information found on this website.
Pages under this section
Last updated: 18 September 2020
This page should be cited as:
Department of Environment and Science, Queensland (2020) Wetland values, WetlandInfo website, accessed 13 May 2021. Available at: https://wetlandinfo.des.qld.gov.au/wetlands/management/wetland-values/