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DAILY NEWS ANALYSIS

  • 14 November, 2022

  • 6 Min Read

Climate Mangrove Alliance

Climate Mangrove Alliance

  • The "Mangrove Alliance for Climate" was recently established by the UAE and Indonesia on the fringes of the COP27 UN climate meeting taking place in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.
  • India joined the Mangrove Alliance for Climate, launched on the sidelines of the ongoing United Nations Climate Summit in Egypt.

Regarding the Alliance

  • A Global Mangrove Research Centre will be constructed in Indonesia as part of this collaboration, and it will carry out research on mangrove ecosystem services like carbon sequestration and ecotourism.
  • Goal: To improve global mangrove ecosystem preservation and restoration.
  • The association will increase public awareness of mangroves' potential as "nature-based climate change solutions".

Partners:

  • The initiative is spearheaded by Indonesia in collaboration with the United Arab Emirates (UAE)
  • It now has partners in Sri Lanka, Spain, Japan, Australia, and India.

About Mangroves:

  • Mangroves are a type of tree that grows near coasts.
  • These trees grow well in salty environments and create distinctive forests at the sea and land's edge.
  • They also flourish in marshes.
  • Mangrove forests can withstand severe weather and need little oxygen to survive.
  • Features: Compared to terrestrial forests, these forests have the capacity to store up to ten times more carbon per hectare.
  • They can store carbon up to 400% more quickly than tropical rainforests on land.
  • They serve as a natural defence against the fury of the sea despite covering less than 1% of the earth's surface.
  • They also serve as breeding sites for marine biodiversity, and a healthy mangrove environment is essential for the survival of 80% of the world's fish populations.

Distribution:

  • In 123 different nations, mangroves can be found in the tropical and subtropical regions of the world.

Mangroves in India

  • Nearly half of South Asia's total mangrove cover comes from India.
  • In India, West Bengal has the largest proportion of mangrove cover. The world's largest mangrove forest, Sundarbans, is located in West Bengal.
  • Gujarat and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands are next.
  • Mangroves are also found in Maharashtra, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Goa, and Kerala.
  • According to the India State of Forest Report (ISFR) 2021, there are 4,992 square kilometres of mangroves in the nation, or 0.15 per cent of its total land area.
  • There has barely been a 17-square-foot increase in mangrove cover nationwide, compared to the mangrove cover estimate from 2019 to 2021.

The importance of mangroves

Natural Armaments:

  • Mangroves are the indigenous armed forces of tropical and subtropical countries because of their remarkable adaptability.
  • By retaining sediments from the land and filtering pollutants, mangrove thickets preserve the quality of the water.
  • Checking Global Temperature: The world, which is desperately trying to find ways to keep global temperature under check, is becoming more and more interested in mangroves because of their extraordinary capacity to trap and store carbon.
  • They are the best alternative to combat climate change's effects, such as sea level rise and an increase in the frequency of natural disasters like cyclones and storm surges.

Challenges

  • Mangroves are most at risk from coastal development, which includes erecting shrimp farms, hotels, and other buildings.
  • To make place for agricultural land and habitations, mangrove forests are destroyed.
  • Other dangers to mangrove ecosystems include overfishing, pollution, and increasing sea levels.
  • Mangrove trees are utilised for animal food, charcoal manufacturing, firewood, and construction materials.
  • Overharvesting has occurred in several regions of the world, which is no longer sustainable.

Mangrove protection initiatives by the Indian government

  • The National Coastal Mission Program's "Conservation and Management of Mangroves and Coral Reefs" is implementing the promotional measures through a Central Sector Scheme.
  • All coastal States and Union Territories are required to develop and implement an annual Management Action Plan (MAP) for the conservation and management of mangroves.
  • Under the Environment (Protection) Act of 1986, the Wild Life (Protection) Act of 1972, the Indian Forest Act of 1927, the Biological Diversity Act of 2002, and rules made under these acts as they have been amended from time to time, regulatory measures are implemented through the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification (2019).

Campaign for Magical Mangroves:

  • According to data from the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), India, the Magical Mangroves campaign of the WWF India has urged residents of nine states—Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Odisha, West Bengal, and Karnataka—to conserve mangroves.
  • The Ministry conducted an Integrated Coastal Zone Management Project in coastal lengths of Gujarat, Odisha, and West Bengal with the goal of conserving and protecting coastal resources, with the planting of mangroves serving as one of the main operations.

Way Forward

  • It is imperative that mangroves be included in national initiatives aimed at lowering emissions caused by deforestation and forest degradation.
  • Countries could reach their NDC targets and become carbon neutral by increasing emissions from mangrove afforestation or decreasing emissions from mangrove destruction

Source: The Hindu


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