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Preserve the services of mangroves -- Earth's invaluable coastal forests, experts urge
Date:11/14/2012

There remains significant pressure from tourism developers and so far, national, regional, and local governments have failed to adequately regulate the fast growing coastal tourism industry."

"It is clear that integrated and stringent management actions are needed to protect remaining mangroves."

The report describes instruments and measures readily available to help conserve and manage mangrove ecosystems, and highlights lessons from around the world on successful measures for protecting mangroves.

And it offers recommendations to improve legal and policy frameworks, mangrove management tools, data and information collection, economic incentives to promote more environmentally-responsible behavior and local livelihoods, recognition of the full value of mangrove ecosystem goods and services, including as carbon stores and sinks, and co-ordinated global action under agreements related to biodiversity, wetlands, sustainable development and climate change.

Among the recommendations are several relating mangroves to the climate change issue:

  • Better connecting mangrove ecosystems with the role they play in the global carbon cycle and climate system could change the economic calculus for mangroves;
  • The role of mangroves in climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction should be integrated in local and national adaptation plans;
  • The key role of mangroves as carbon stores and sinks needs to be highlighted in national and international strategies that address climate change;
  • Enhance existing carbon stocks and reverse CO2 emissions by increasing protection and restoration of mangrove ecosystems, and build mangroves into emissions trading and climate change mitigation planning.

The World Atlas of Mangroves documents over 3,840 square km worth of restoration projects worldwide and "there are doubtless many more," notes Dr. Spalding, who was lead author of the Atlas.

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Contact: Terry Collins
tc@tca.tc
416-538-8712
United Nations University
Source:Eurekalert  

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