The Saltmarsh Restoration Handbook was launched on 5 November at the COP26 conference in Glasgow, and highlights the vital role saltmarshes play in the environment. They are an important habitat for many flora and fauna, including being an essential nursery for young fish. Their destruction is now understood as a significant factor in the decline of some fish stocks, as well as potentially impacting in the catastrophic crash in crustacean numbers along the open coast of Sussex, and shellfish numbers within Chichester Harbour.
These distinctive inter-tidal habitats also store carbon at a faster rate than tropical rainforests, and can boost flood resilience and mitigate growing risks of coastal erosion. Yet a large proportion of the saltmarshes in the UK and around the world have been lost, used as landfill sites or converted for agricultural use and development land.