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kelp forest

Oceanic kelp forests are regrowing thanks to charity that sells art to fund carbon capture projects

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The key role of the Amazon rainforest both in sequestering carbon and supporting a rich diversity of ecosystems is well known. But equally crucial to the wellbeing of the planet—if less high profile—are the giant kelp forests that lie beneath the world’s oceans and line one quarter of all coastlines.

Like their land-based counterparts, these underwater forests of brown algae are also vanishing at an alarming rate. Southern Australia and Northern California have lost 95% of their kelp forests and rapid declines are occurring on every continent due to a lethal combination of rising sea temperatures, pollution and aggressive fishing techniques.

“Kelp is extraordinary: it's the marine forest, the aquatic Amazon of biodiversity and it’s also the fastest-growing organism on the planet,” says the artist Petroc Sesti. “Kelp de-acidifies the water, it oxygenates it and literally pulls carbon out of the water. And it doesn't take anything from the planet because it doesn’t actually have a root.”

Pic: n great part thanks to Platform Earth, some oceanic kelp forests—specifically those around the south coast of the UK which had shrunk to 4% of their former size—are staging a comeback. Courtesy of Platform Earth

Read the full story at The Art Newspaper...

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