Goal 4: Future Research Needs

"Advance the science of wetland restoration and management in Southern California."

For detailed information on Goal 4 objectives and research questions, see the Goal 4 section of the Regional Strategy 2018.


One of the key roles of the Wetlands Recovery Project is to apply the best available science to wetland management decisions. Through the development of the Regional Strategy 2018, we have identified the following science objectives to continue to advance our understanding:

  1. Analyze the ecological and physical effects on wetland function of coastal jetties and other hard infrastructure.
  2. Develop quantitative objectives for the unique wetlands of the Channel Islands.
  3. Maintain a standing Science Advisory Panel for the region.
  4. Refine the sea level rise vulnerability assessment.
  5. Refine the quantitative objectives for salt flats, intermittently-open/closed estuaries, wetland-upland transition zones, and shallow subtidal areas.
  6. Refine the objectives for non-tidal wetlands (streams, rivers and other freshwater wetlands).

The Regional Strategy 2018 should be periodically updated to reflect advances in wetland and climate change science, new policies and community needs, and shifting opportunities and constraints in the landscape. We recommend completing the next Regional Strategy update by 2030 as that will provide the scientific community time to address many of the identified research needs. Also, 2030 is one of the first milestones in the Goal 1 timeline where much of the land required to meet our Goal 1 Objectives (here) should be in public ownership or protected. By updating the Regional Strategy 2018 at this first milestone, the WRP will be able to assess progress in achieving its Objectives, incorporate new science, and adjust Objectives to meet new needs if necessary. The research questions and Regional Strategy 2018 needs outlined in this chapter should be addressed within the next 10 years in order to provide the information required to update the Regional Strategy again by 2030.