Thursday, September 1, 2016

MAP News Issue 398 - Sept. 3, 2016

Mangrove Action Project Newsletter
The MAP News
398th Edition                               September 3, 2016
FEATURE STORY

Mourning the Sundarbans
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BANGLADESH - The recognition of Mangrove Action Day by the UN is an achievement of the consistent struggle of a number of transnational environmentalist organisations including the Mangrove Action Project, Red Manglar, ASIA, African Mangrove Network, and many international activist-grids that have been celebrating July 26 as International Mangrove Day for over a decade. Although this year the world was poised to hear joyous sounds of celebration for the mangroves, the ominous din of devastation cast a dark shadow across the Earth instead. We heard about the plans that threaten the Sundarbans, the world’s largest mangrove forest, contrived by corporations and governments of Bangladesh and India who signed a contract to build a new coal fired power plant at Rampal. Despite strong opposition and thorough critiques, a new deal was signed by both Bangladesh and Indian governments that has given the go-ahead to the controversial Rampal coal-fired plant to be built within 14 kilometres to the Sundarbans, an invaluable ecosystem along Bangladesh’s coast. Instead of celebrating International Mangrove Day, Bangladeshi environmentalists were found super anxious, traumatised — mourning over mangrove policy of the government that has put the interests of the corporations before national and natural resources of Bangladesh. READ MORE

AFRICA

The tribes paying the brutal price of conservation
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BOTSWANA - For the past 20 years, the San have been systematically stripped of their homes, land and culture. In a series of heavy-handed evictions, houses have been burned, schools and health centres closed, and water supplies cut off. Now these people live, dispossessed, on the edge of the huge game park, forbidden to hunt in or enter the land they have lived on sustainably for centuries. Meanwhile, one of the largest diamond mines in the world has been allowed to open in the park, and wealthy big game hunters from abroad are welcomed to newly constructed state-of-the-art game lodges. Is this conservation, or something more akin to bullying of the weak and exploitation of the land in the interests of the powerful? What has happened in Botswana is happening all over the world, according to an increasingly vocal group of campaigners, academics and environmentalists. They claim that indigenous peoples are being appallingly treated and abused, all in the name of a conservation philosophy that carries a heavy human cost. READ MORE

ASIA

Workshop aims to improve livelihood of local fishermen in Sundarbans
Opening ceremony
BANGLADESH - Bangladesh Environment and Development Society (BEDS) has been implementing a project entitle " Sustainable Mangrove Biodiversity Conservation through livelihood improvement of Sundarbans fishermen" Under the project BEDS organized a day long Training workshop with the 75 fishermen family members (both male and female) of Mathurapur Jelly Polly (Fishermen village) on "Sundarbans Mangrove Ecosystem Service in Daily Life" among the fishermen villagers at Mathurapur fishing village, under Shyamnagar sub district of Satkhira district. In the training session the participants were taught in details by the BEDS prepared poster which mainly addressed to Sundarbans contribution in life and livelihood, safeguard of natural calamities, Environmental and Ecological services and historical and cultural services. The trainer explained how Sundarbans is preserving us, how it becomes the income source of a massive people and how people’s unconsciousness and ignorance leads it to the risk of its extinction. The trainer urged the participants to conserve the Sundarbans and its biodiversity for our betterment. VIEW POSTER

Advancing the Mapping and Monitoring of Mangroves in SE Asia
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VIET NAM - SERVIR-Mekong, the Sustainable Wetlands Adaptation and Mitigation Program (SWAMP), and SilvaCarbon co-organized a regional workshop in Ho Chi Minh City to share the latest advances in mangrove mapping and monitoring and to facilitate the application of existing operational methods. The workshop, which was conducted in collaboration with the Vietnam Forest Inventory and Planning Institute (FIPI) and Can Tho University, focused primarily on Cambodia, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam, with additional examples from Bangladesh and Indonesia. The event drew over 60 participants, including representatives from government agencies responsible for mangrove management and land use mapping, research institutions, and civil society. Outputs from the workshop will include a policy brief and a technical review to be shared with the wider community. READ MORE

Move to notify private mangrove lands in limbo – threatens mangroves
INDIA - Vast swathes of mangrove vegetation are fast disappearing in Kerala as a proposal for declaring some of the rare and threatened vegetations in two districts as Ecologically Fragile Land have been lost in wilderness. The proposal was to notify vegetation on private holdings in Kollam and Thrissur by invoking the provisions of the Kerala Forests (Vesting and management of ecologically fragile lands) Act. The ecologically fragile land vested in the government will also be deemed as reserved forests constituted under the Kerala Forest Act. A legislative committee on environment, headed by Palode Ravi, had prioritised the holdings after inspecting the sites and recommended that the holdings shall be notified invoking Sec 4 of the Act. Though a subcommittee formed by the State Forest Department, as instructed by the legislative committee, had recommended to notify 100 hectares rare and threatened mangrove vegetation in two districts one year ago, the proposal has not materialised, thus exposing the vulnerable vegetation to anthropogenic pressures. READ MORE

Creeping threat to mangrove forests in Nellore
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INDIA - Mangrove forests in the coastal areas are considered nature’s barrier against the fury of cyclones and other natural calamities as they prevent land erosion. Nellore district, which has a 157-km-long coastline, has a rich growth of mangroves in stretches where fishermen’s habitations and hamlets are located. In the wake of rapid industrialisation and setting up of sea ports, the forests are faced with the threat of destruction. These forests are the best bet in times of cyclones which pose a threat to the district, especially during November. Studies revealed that the mangroves extended to about 40 acres and these are found close to habitations like Krishnapatnam and all along Buckingham Canal in Muthukuru mandal. READ MORE

Mangrove in the Sundarbans declining as locals use the plants fruits as fuel
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BANGLADESH - Mangroves plants in the Sundarbans, one of the largest such forests in the world which lies on the delta of the Ganges, Brahmaputra and Meghna rivers on the Bay of Bengal, are delcining day by day as people living near the forest use its fruits as fuel. According to local sources, everyday thousands of fruits of various species plants come in Shamnagar area floating with river water from the Sundarbans. The people of the area collect the fruits and use those as fuel. As a result new plants cannot grow and the plants of the Sundarbans are decreasing day by day. There are a total of 334 species belonging to 245 generation of angiosperms and ferns in the Sundarbans and adjacent areas. The entire mangrove forest is called Sundarban owing to the dominance of the tree species Heritiera fomes, locally known as sundari because of its elegance. Sundarban flora is characterized by of 26 True Mangrove species and 29 mangrove associates species have been identified. Characteristic mangrove species include garjan, kankra, goran and baen. READ MORE

Editor’s note: The following story highlights the dilemna of food supply, habitat loss and increasing world demand for seafood. It remains to be seen if this nascent industry will improve or worsen the condition of mangrove forests and its dependent species
Varsity successfully breeds mangrove crabs
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MALAYSIA - A group of experts from Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) Borneo Marine Research Institute have succesfully bred its first batch of mangrove crabs from their hatchery. The successful batch, believed to be the first of its kind in the state, is set to boost the production of mangrove crabs, which are currently very much sought after as seafood. Institute director Prof Dr Rossita Shapawi said their breakthrough in the seedling production came after more than three years of research. “We wanted to initiate seedling production for the mangrove crabs due to increasing customer demand,” she said. She said the current supply was mostly harvested naturally and there is a decline in the numbers of mangrove crabs, especially its females. READ MORE

AMERICA

Synchronicity Earth to feature series of educational articles
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USA - This is the first in our series of Spotlight features focusing on a specific ecosystem or habitat, looking at what makes it unique and worth protecting. We will highlight the work of some of the conservation projects and people working hard to protect and/or restore these places for their diversity of species and intrinsic value, as well as their value to the communities that live in and around them. In spite of all the benefits derived from mangroves’ existence, human activities are threatening these unique ecosystems. Coastal urbanization, agriculture, aquaculture, logging and other destructive causes threaten the world’s mangrove cover. One group, the Mangrove Action Project, which Synchronicity Earth supports, has learned how to restore abandoned shrimp ponds back to mangrove using a technique called Community Based Ecological Mangrove Restoration (CBEMR). MAP studied the successful Ecological Mangrove Restoration (EMR) method developed and utilized by Robin Lewis of Florida, USA for over 30 years which places strong emphasis on correcting the hydrology and removing stressors so that mangroves can regenerate naturally. MAP adopted these EMR principles while also recognizing the critical role of local communities, as central stakeholders, and Community-based Ecological Mangrove Restoration (CBEMR) evolved. Robin Lewis trained MAP's Jim Enright on how to implement the EMR methodology and continues to provide ongoing technical support. READ MORE

EUROPE

Evaluating, predicting and mapping below ground carbon stores in Kenyan mangroves
UK - Despite covering only approximately 138 000 km2, mangroves are globally important carbon sinks with carbon density values three to four times that of terrestrial forests. A key challenge in evaluating the carbon benefits from mangrove forest conservation is the lack of rigorous spatially resolved estimates of mangrove sediment carbon stocks; most mangrove carbon is stored below ground. Previous work has focused on detailed estimations of carbon stores over relatively small areas, which has obvious limitations in terms of generality and scope of application. Most studies have focused only on quantifying the top 1 m of belowground carbon (BGC). Carbon stored at depths beyond 1 m, and the effects of mangrove species, location and environmental context on these stores, are poorly studied. This study investigated these variables at two sites (Gazi and Vanga in the south of Kenya) and used the data to produce a country-specific BGC predictive model for Kenya and map BGC store estimates throughout Kenya at spatial scales relevant for climate change research, forest management and REDD+ (reduced emissions from deforestation and degradation). The results revealed that mangrove species was the most reliable predictor of BGC; Rhizophora muronata had the highest mean BGC with 1485.5 t C ha. READ MORE


LAST WORD(S)

Hi MAPpers

I saw your friendly email from MMM4 – it was nice to meet you there Martin and I hope your trip went well.

You asked for stories. Our latest is in the paper HERE – not a new finding that mangroves have lots of carbon. but we were digging down to 3 metres and so got average values of ~1500 t hectare, much higher than in most other studies. This is feeding in to the work we are doing with Mikoko Pamoja (www.aces-org.co.uk) to ‘market’ this carbon for conservation and development purposes, which is going well.

Best of luck with all your important work

Mark

Mark Huxham BSc, PhD, PFHEA
Professor of Teaching and Research in Environmental Biology
University lead for Pedagogical Research
Room 7B04 Sighthill Campus
School of Applied Sciences, Edinburgh Napier University, Edinburgh EH11 4BN
Tel: 0131 4552514; skpe: mark.huxham2
 

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Action Alerts:

MAP Mangrove Action Day PhotosView photos of our 2016 Event

The world's largest mangrove forest is in danger from a massive coal plant.
UNESCO can put pressure on India and Bangladesh to protect the forest, but they need to see that people around the world are speaking out. Click here to add your voice.

Tell the Ex-Im Bank: Don't let Big Coal wreck mangrove forests
The U.S. Export-Import Bank is considering using US tax dollars to pay for two coal plants in Bangladesh. These projects would wreck the world’s largest mangrove forest and devastate the Bengal tigers that live there. We need your help to stop it! 

Our new short documentary, Reducing the Risk of Disaster through Nature-Based Solutions : Mangroves
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Tell Dam Builders to Pull Out of Agua Zarca Dam! For years, critics of the Agua Zarca dam project in Honduras have been targeted by a campaign of violence, intimidation and outright murder. Then, on March 2, Berta Cáceres – vocal critic of the Agua Zarca Dam, Goldman Prize winner and mother of four – was brutally murdered in her home. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH Sign out Petition

Tell Red Lobster its "Endless shrimp" deal is damaging and unfair to the workers SIGN THE PETITION

Mangroves: Guidebook to Malaysia – available for download here

Mangrove rehabilitation in Asia – Local Action and cross-border Transfer of Knowledge for the Conservation of Climate, Forests and Biodiversity VIEW VIDEOS HERE

Volunteer Opportunities with Mangrove Action Project CLICK HERE
 
STOP PLANTING MANGROVES ON SEAGRASS BEDS _ A CALL TO ACTION
Want to learn more about mangroves?mangrove-action-project-presentation-1-1024.jpg?cb=1424228039
Our short presentation will give you a better understanding of the issues we are working to solve. WATCH PRESENTATION
What is CBEMR? Easy to follow fact sheet – CLICK HERE

SHARE MAP'S VISION 
CLICK HERE to watch short introductory video. Together we can work "at the roots of the sea".
Join us in saving our beautiful country!
We hope you have been following the ongoing battle in Bimini, Bahamas.
We are in need of your help more than ever Click here

Exclusive Interview with Alfredo Quarto, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Mangrove Action Project - See more
Save the Sundarbans from Rampal power plant – View Sample Letter to Minister
Sign the Petition

Question Your Shrimp- Don't Buy or Sell Imported Tropical Shrimp! Sign the Petition

Marvellous Mangroves Curriculum

Marvellous Mangroves Curriculum in Bangladesh - WATCH VIDEO
MARVELLOUS MANGROVES IN BRAZIL
En Portuges

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Marvellous Mangroves – A Curriculum-Based Teachers Guide.


FOR MORE ON MAPs AWARD WINNING CHINA MANGROVE CURRICULUM VISIT
Education in the Mangroves - China
VIMEO SHOW
VISIT OUR "MM" WEBPAGE

Check out our presentation for more details on Marvellous Mangroves

“Education In The Mangroves" can now be seen on the  PhotoPhilanthropy website here!

Read this 10 page history of the development of MAP’s educational curriculum VIEW DOCUMENT

Article in Canada's Green Teacher Magazine - Read More

FREE MAP Mangrove e-cards CLICK HERE
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MAP’s e-Cards offer you a unique way to spread the word about MAP’s good works, while sharing beautiful photographs of the mangroves

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Giving could never be easier
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It’s the action, not the fruit of the action, that's important. You have to do the right thing. It may not be in your power, may not be in your time, that there'll be any fruit. But that doesn't mean you stop doing the right thing. You may never know what results come from your action. But if you do nothing, there will be no result. —Mahatma Gandhi

Green Planet Fundraising Assists MAP – LEARN MORE

MANGROVE ISSUES 
View MAP’s uploaded Videos at MAPmangrover’sChannel

The importance of restoring mangroves in an effective, long-term manner. Mangrove CBEMR video - VIEW
Question Your Shrimp Consumer/Markets Campaign!  WATCH VIDEO

Mangrove Restoration in Asia – Watch Short Video

Mosaic of Life
READ A MOSAIC OF LIFE Peek into the underwater world of mangroves, "womb of the sea." By Liz Cunningham Photos By Wes Matweyew and Liz Cunningham
 

"Question Your Shrimp" Campaign

Learn more about the affects of the shrimp industry on mangroves by visiting our blog
Editor’s Note: Mangrove Action Project’s Executive Director, Alfredo Quarto was interviewed about shrimp by Green Acre Radio’s Martha Baskin
LISTEN TO INTERVIEW

Information sheds clear light on shrimp-mangrove connection
Question Your Shrimp
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