On first International Day, UNESCO calls for protection of mangrove ecosystems
Photograph: © SAF — Coastal Care
Mangroves are rare and vital ecosystems that help to protect coastlines and mitigate the effects of climate change, but their survival is being jeopardized, the United Nations cultural agency said July 26th,2016, on first World’s Mangrove Day, calling for greater preservation efforts as the international community marks the first ever International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem.
“Mangroves are rare, spectacular and prolific ecosystems on the boundary between land and sea. They ensure food security for local communities. They provide biomass, forest products and sustain fisheries. They contribute to the protection of coastlines. They help mitigate the effects of climate change and extreme weather events,” said Irina Bokova, Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in a message to mark the Day.
“This is why the protection of mangrove ecosystems is essential today. Their survival faces serious challenges – from the alarming rise of the sea level and biodiversity that is increasingly endangered. The earth and humanity simply cannot afford to lose these vital ecosystems,” she added.
Mangroves – ecosystems located on the interface of land and sea in tropical regions – can play an important role in reducing vulnerability to natural hazards and increasing resilience to climate change impacts, by acting as a form of natural coastal defense. However, mangroves are disappearing three to five times faster than overall global forest losses, with serious ecological and socio-economic impacts, UNESCO said…
Destruction of Mangroves Costs up to US$42 billion in Economic Damages Annually – UNEP Report (10-14-2014)
The world is losing its mangroves at a faster rate than global deforestation, the United Nations revealed, in a new report “Importance of Mangroves: A Call to Action,” adding that the destruction of the coastal habitats was costing billions in economic damages and impacting millions of lives…
Mangroves Help Protect Against Sea Level Rise, Science Daily (07-27-2015)
Mangrove forests could play a crucial role in protecting coastal areas from sea level rise caused by climate change, according to new research involving the University of Southampton…