Myanmar: ACTED, Mangrove Service Network (MSN)
Thailand: Mangrove Action Project (MAP)
Vietnam: Mangrove Ecosystem Research Center (MERC)
The MAP News
421st Edition MANGROVE ACTION DAY 2017 July 26, 2017
MAP celebrates 25 years of Mangrove Action with Mangrove Action Day
USA - Mangrove Action Project is proud to celebrate 25 years of working to expand the awareness of mangrove forests and the people who depend upon them. Twenty-five years ago, raising public awareness on mangroves and roles they play in fisheries, human safety, carbon-storage, coral reel protection, migratory bird habitat, and myriads of other benefits and value, seemed nearly insurmountable. Forests were being decimated, and destructive forces seemed unwilling to listen to the small voices of communities and NGO who cried out against them. However, here we are in 2017, 25 years later, celebrating Mangrove Action Day which has been recognized by the United Nations and endorsed by countless communities and organizations, both public and private around the globe. We here at MAP are pleased to join in honoring Mangrove Action Day July 26, 2017 activities. It is now apparent that the entire world has joined us in recognizing the role these vital forest ecosystems play in human life as well as the planet's life. However, there is still much to be done. Coal fired power plants, dams, overfishing, coastal development and yes, still, unsustainable shrimp farming continue to destroy countless hectares of forest annually. As you remember Mangrove Action Day today, we encourage you to use your small voice to continue to work towards a healthier future; for the planet and for our children. We are here to attest, it works. READ MORE
‘Safeguarding Wetlands’: YES Launches Sustainable Environmental Actions
LIBERIA - The Youth Exploring Solutions (YES), an accredited non-for-profit, passionate and voluntary grassroots youth-led development organization has launched a landmark project titled “Promoting Sustainable Environmental Actions”. This project is being supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) through the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) unprecedented small grant initiative for youth-led development organization working on environmental issues. The youth leader stressed that the project will involve a crowd-sourcing and voluntary grassroots-based solutions to solving some of the most critical and pressing issues facing the wetlands and mangroves alongside the SKD Boulevard through the ‘Liberian Environmental Awareness Forum’. “Mangroves are among the most productive and biologically complex ecosystems. They allow many species to thrive from starfish to monkey and are important for local communities living along the coastlines.” READ MORE
Tanzania dam threatens Eastern Africa’s largest mangrove forest
TANZANIA - Tanzania's government still wants a hydroelectric dam built in a key wildlife reserve despite mounting appeals from UNESCO. The WWF conservation group says the project also threatens the livelihoods of 200,000 residents. In its report Tuesday cited by Associated Press, the WWF said the project would have much wider impacts such as cutting off wildlife migration routes, endangering existing wetlands and harming the present livelihoods of more than 200,000 residents reliant on fishing downstream of the intended dam. WWF called on Tanzania's government to consider alternative ways to generate electricity, which currently reaches few rural residents. he project would more than double Tanzania's power generation from 1,450 megawatts to at least 4,000 megawatts, the paper said. Currently, the river's coastline delta contains the largest mangrove forest in eastern Africa, about 200 kilometers (120 miles) south of Dar es Salaam. READ MORE
To Plant or Not to Plant
Experts draw attention to a successful method of mangrove regeneration on International Mangrove Day, 26th July 2017
Today, on the International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem, conservation organisations and mangrove specialists worldwide highlight the multifunctional benefits of the practice of ‘natural regeneration’ of mangroves. Compared to planting efforts, survival rates are considerably higher and it results in a more biodiverse, resilient and productive mangrove forest, enhancing community livelihoods and reducing disaster risk. During the last decade enormous interest has been raised in the role mangroves can play in reducing tropical storm, coastal erosion and flood risk for coastal communities. Across the world hundreds of thousands of hectares of mangroves have been actively planted. But the majority of planting efforts fail as planted seedlings die and even if seedlings survive, the ecological value of a monoculture and benefits of the planting efforts for increased community resilience are questionable. Wetlands International, Mangrove Action Project, Mangroves for the Future and the IUCN Mangrove Specialist Group (MSG) say that a more appropriate mangrove restoration is urgently needed worldwide to enhance coastal safety, fisheries, aquaculture and carbon sequestration. To support best practices, they pulled together lessons learnt in a discussion paper and raise attention for the ‘Ecological Mangrove Restoration approach’ (Lewis 2014). READ MORE
Lessons on conservation from 'the land of eternal mangroves'
SRI LANKA - People are still missing in Sri Lanka after devastating floods and landslides last month killed hundreds and displaced thousands on the island nation. But in communities all along the coastline of this island nation in the Indian Ocean, there are efforts to protect ecosystems that could in turn protect the country from rains and storms capable of wiping away entire towns. Sri Lanka is working on mangrove forest protection measures that have been praised as the first of their kind in the world. And while recent heavy rains may have destroyed seedlings, they have only strengthened the determination of the government and its partners to continue their work on mangrove conservation and restoration. “Weather events in Sri Lanka, as elsewhere on the planet, have become more and more extreme and unpredictable. Again and again, communities with intact mangrove forests fare better during and in the aftermath of these events than those where mangroves have been destroyed,” said Karen Peterson. READ MORE
Massive loss in mangrove saplings in last 4 years
INDIA - In a massive setback for the environment, more than 94,000 saplings planted by the state mangrove cell at Charkop and Malwani have died in the past four years. Maharashtra government has plans to plant 50 lakh mangrove saplings by 2019 to revive degraded wetlands. The cases of mangrove destruction has been rampant, with at least two per week being recorded in the state. The destruction is continuing despite orders from the Bombay High Court and laws such as the Environment Protection Act, 1986 and Indian Forest Act, 1927, which are supposed to protect the mangrove ecosystem. The state government planted mangrove saplings between 2013 and 2016 across 300 hectares in Mumbai and Navi Mumbai. While 84,000 saplings were planted near Charkop village on 19 hectares — all of which died. Around 20,000 saplings were planted near Manori village of which 10,000 saplings died over the past four years. READ MORE
Encroached mangrove forest seized in Surat Thani
THAILAND -Authorities seized more than 500 rai of encroached mangrove forest in Tha Chang district. The raid, jointly conducted by the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR), the military and local administrative officers, was part of a national operation to restore mangrove forests. DMCR deputy director-general Sopon Thongdee said a total of 544 rai and 3 blocks of mangrove forest reserve land were confiscated in coastal tambons of Khao Than and Tha Khoei in Tha Chang district. Located on the land were deserted shrimp farms and palm oil plantations. There were no people there. In Surat Thani, over 1,700 rai of encroached mangrove land had also been reclaimed so far. READ MORE
Why the World’s Rivers Are Losing Sediment and Why It Matters
EDITORS NOTE: The damming of the Mekong is having big effect on the Delta and its mangroves in Vietnam, just as the dams on the Mississippi have had ruinous effects on the delta there and resulted in the loss of about a 50 mile wetland buffer between New Orleans and the sea, resulting in the recent disaster created by Hurricane Katrina. Closer to MAP’s home in Washington State, scientist are seeing an unexpected benefit of sediment on coastal ecologies that may apply to mangrove forests worldwide.
U.S.A. - Elwha and Glines dams on the Elwha River in northwestern Washington state. At the time, it was the largest dam removal project in U.S. history, and it took nearly three years for both barriers to be dismantled and for the river to once again flow freely. Over the course of their nearly century-long lives, the two dams collected more than 24 million cubic yards of sediment behind them, enough to fill the Seattle Seahawks football stadium eight times. And since their removal, the Elwha has taken back the trapped sediment and distributed it downstream, causing the riverine ecosystem to be rebuilt and transformed. Massive quantities of silt, sand, and gravel have been carried to the coast, resurrecting a wetlands ecosystem long deprived of sediment. Scientists are now beginning to fully appreciate the life-giving effects of sediment, which some researchers, as well as people who live along waterways, once viewed as a malevolent force that choked the life out of rivers, streams, and wetlands. READ MORE
Open Source GIS Tools Helping Save Mangrove Forests
MEXICO - At the end of the Baja Peninsula between the states of Sinaloa and Nayarit lies the Marismas Nacionales,or National Marshes, the largest intact mangrove forest on the Pacific Coast of Mexico. The ecosystem services provided by these hundreds of square miles of mangrove forests are important to the local economy, especially the families who rely on fishing and shrimping. The mangrove ecosystems in the Marismas Nacionales also provide other benefits sustaining and fulfilling human life, such as local coastal erosion protection and carbon sequestration. Mangrove forests can remove greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and they store enormous amounts of carbon in their sediments, leaves, and other biomass. Yet over the last 45 years, mangrove forests in the Marismas Nacionales have been in decline. The construction of dams is a likely cause. Dams create imbalances in salinity and sediment that can affect large areas of mangrove forest. READ MORE
Walking Trees Terrorize Marshes
Editor’s Note: This recent study predicts salt marshes will be able to keep up with sea level rise & migrate inland, IF there is no hard infrastructure preventing expansion. The other big factor is there no change to the sediment load. Both factors are also critical to mangroves re: sea level rise.
U.S.A. - The good news: mangroves in Florida are on the rise. The bad news: mangroves in Florida are on the rise. In the shadow of the Kennedy Space Center, in Florida’s Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, a quiet invasion is taking place. Amid the brackish water and rustling grass that dominate this salt marsh ecosystem, thickets of mangroves—known locally as “walking trees” for their spindly wooden “legs”—are putting down roots. Mangrove forests are critical tropical habitat and are disappearing worldwide. But in Florida, mangroves are booming. Helped along by rising temperatures, mangrove coverage in the Sunshine State’s northern reaches has doubled over the past 30 years. This should be great news for the flagging ecosystem, but the mangrove takeover in Florida is a hostile one. Given time, the colonizing mangroves are likely to entirely consume some of the state’s iconic salt marshes. Coastal ecologist Samantha Chapman from Pennsylvania’s Villanova University and doctoral candidate Cheryl Doughty visited Merritt Island in 2013 to get a sense of how the area could change if the mangroves have their way. Such a shift could be dramatic, they found, but the mangroves’ takeover will have considerable upsides. READ MORE
JULY 26 International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem
GLOBAL - 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. 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. UNESCO has always been on the frontline of promoting new and harmonious relations between humanity and nature, where the preservation of mangrove ecosystems carries special importance. To this end, UNESCO is working across the board and with all partners on an open initiative on mangroves and sustainable development. UNESCO’s World Network of Biosphere Reserves has 86 sites out of 669 that include areas of mangroves. READ MORE
Sundarbans Solidarity Action Networking and An Alternative Energy Solutions for Bangladesh Aug 19-20
GERMANY - The Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) and National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) have signed a joint venture to commission a 1320 MW coal fired power plant, Rampal Power plant in the vicinity of the Sundarbans. From the beginning of the project, we – the concerned citizens, activist groups and organisations, the environment and the ecological experts at national and international levels – have expressed our deep concerns to the destructive project. Despite, unprecedented concerns expressed by numerous environmentalist groups and activists from Bangladesh and all over the world the BIFPCL has recklessly started the construction work of the 1,320 MW coal fired power plant in the vicinity of the Sundarbans in April 2017. Therefore, we are organising an European convention in Berlin to bring together Bangladeshi and international energy experts, activists and advocates to meet in a forum of what we call a diverse yet united platform - where we can express our solidarity to the movement to Save the Sundarbans through productive discussion on the feasibility of renewable energy in Bangladesh. Join us 19-20 August, 2017 READ MORE
We are delighted to present the result of a scientific research project that is fruit of a collaboration between the Federal University of Ceará (UFC) and the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB). This is the article that has just been published in the journal Ecosystem Services entitled "Neglected ecosystem services: Highlighting the socio-cultural perception of mangroves in decision-making processes." The results were concerned with the proposal of tools for the management and formulation of policies for the conservation of coastal ecosystems, investigating the socio-cultural evaluation of ecosystem services of the mangroves through a case study carried out in the Cumbe community in the State of Ceará, Northeast of Brazil. It is a Quilombola community territory of fishermen and shellfish sharply impacted by shrimp aquaculture. A combination of methodologies was used to complement ecosystem services identified in the academic literature with those perceived by the local community in order to analyze the locally perceived mangroves services in relation to livelihoods. We demonstrated that the local community identified four additional cultural services which were the maintenance of traditional ecological knowledge (TEK), creation and maintenance of social relationships, personal satisfaction and mental and physical relaxation. This demonstrates a symbolic linkage with mangroves beyond the material analysis usually used to evaluate ecosystem services and shows that the sociocultural dimension of mangrove services is an indispensable criterion to be considered in the different decision-making processes. We hope this article will contribute to addressing the challenges for the conservation of coastal ecosystems.
Follow the links to download the article:
Socio-Cultural Percepions of Mangroves in Decision Making
Luciana de Souza Queiroz
Antônio Jeovah de Andrade Meireles
Download the paper ‘Mangrove Restoration: to plant or not to plant’, available in 7 languages.
Mangrove.is Photography Contest!
Send us your best photos of mangrove forests to help raise awareness of their importance for this years Mangrove Action Day 2017 ENTER NOW
Calling schools, teachers and students!
We invite all school children from tropical and sub-tropical nations, and those who love mangroves, to create art for the 2018 Children's Art Calendar CLICK HERE
Mangrove Action Project
|Our long-tail boat to Koh Phra Thong|
|Navigating through the mangrove forest|
|Savannah in front and behind, Casuarina trees hidding the ocean view|
|Pa Nee helping us with the seagrass monitoring|
The MAP News
Mangrove Action Day is July 26
Let us know your plans
GLOBAL - Mangrove Action Project (MAP) has been working since 1992 (25 years!) to halt the rampant destruction of the earth’s mangrove forest wetlands that are threatened by unsustainable development. Such industries as charcoal and petroleum production, tourism and urban expansion, golf courses and marinas are all threats to mangrove forests today. Still, the largest threat stems from industrial shrimp aquaculture production, which is the largest contributor to current mangrove loss. In the past 100 years, over half the world’s mangrove forests have been lost to such short-sighted development pressures. Today, only around 15 million ha of the estimated original 36 million ha of mangroves still exist, while much of the remaining mangroves are degraded and in poor health. Mangroves also protect coastal communities from hurricane force winds and wave surges. For these reasons and more, in 2003, MAP joined other organizations from the global South to promote July 26th as Mangrove Action Day. We ask that you and/or your organizations please join us all in a global protest against the ongoing losses of the mangrove forest ecosystems and the local communities that depend upon the mangroves for their lives and livelihoods. Please send MAP your regional or local plans for actions that are meant to commemorate this international Day for the Mangroves! MAP would like to again share your plans and ideas with our global network. We look forward to hearing from you soon in this regard! READ MORE
Alarm as mangrove forests at the Kenyan Coast rapidly disappear
KENYA - Mombasa is becoming hotter due to the depletion of mangrove forests, a vital ally in the fight against climate change, with the situation along the Kenyan coast projected to get worse with time. A recent study carried out at Tudor Creek - the water body separating Mombasa Island from the mainland - shows that more than 80 per cent of mangroves along the Indian Ocean coast in the area have been wiped out. Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) assistant director of wetlands and marine conservation, Dr Mohamed Omar, says urgent intervention is required to conserve the disappearing forests. “From the 1960s, the mangrove cover at the creek to date has diminished by 80 per cent if not more. This is a very serious situation because we foresee a situation without mangroves in Mombasa especially within Tudor Creek,” warned Dr Omar at the launch of the National Mangrove Ecosystem Management Plan in Mombasa. Mangrove forests are key to regulating climate at the coast since they capture carbon dioxide from the environment at a rate that's five times more efficient than other forests. Apart from their central role in fighting climate change, they also help support tourism and fishing sectors as they play host to a variety of fish and wildlife species. “We are losing the battle against climate change due to the status of the mangroves...that is why Mombasa is getting hotter,” he noted. READ MORE
Endangered mangrove species found in West Kalimantan
INDONESIA - A Kalimantan-based environmental institution has released findings of an endangered mangrove species discovered within the coastal landscape of Padang Tikar and Dabung in Kubu Raya regency, West Kalimantan. “The finding of this tumuk putih species, or Bruguiera hainesii, is the first in Indonesia. This type of mangrove previously only existed in Malaysia, Singapore and Papua New Guinea,” said Denni Nurdwiansyah, the program manager of Friends of Coastal Communities (Sampan) Kalimantan as quoted by Antara news agency. Denni said the species is listed in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species’s critically endangered category. The species has a population of around 203 trees, 80 of which are found in Malaysia, three in Singapore and 120 in Papua New Guinea. The community's mangrove specialist Bekti Saputro said the finding indicated that the mangrove ecosystem in Padang Tikar is still healthy and well-preserved. READ MORE
A workshop on Lessons Learned using Community based Ecological Mangrove Restoration
THAILAND - The Mangrove Action Project (MAP) in collaboration with the Center for People and Forests (RECOFTC) and Raks Thai Foundation (CARE-Thailand) organized a two days workshop on “Lessons Learned from Community based Ecological Mangrove Restoration” which was held in Krabi on July 1-2, 2017. There were 24 participants, including seven staff, and seventeen representatives from the CBEMR community network from the villages of Thale Nok, Ranong Province, Tha-sanook, Phang Nga, Nai Nang, Koh Klang and Thung Yor, Krabi Province and Bang Khang Khao and Leam Makham, Trang Province. The workshop was facilitated by two resource persons from RECOFTC and two from Raks Thai Foundation. MAP has been working on mangrove restoration utilizing the CBEMR method with mangrove communities on the Andaman Coast (Ranong, Phang Nga, Krabi and Trang provinces) since 2009 under a number of different implementing projects. CBEMR uses hydrological restoration to support the natural regeneration of mangroves in former shrimp ponds and degraded mangroves. READ MORE
Climate change impact: Sunderbans steadily losing its famed mangroves
BANGLADESH - In a development that will ring alarm bells for both environmentalists and policy makers, the mangrove forest cover in the Indian Sunderbans has been depleting alarmingly over the past few decades. Mangrove Forest Cover Changes in Indian Sundarban (1986-2012) Using Remote Sensing and GIS, a publication by the School of Oceanographic Studies, Jadavpur University, reveals that from 1986 to 2012, 124.418 sq. km. mangrove forest cover has been lost. The total forest cover of the Indian Sunderbans as assessed by remote sensing studies for the year 1986 was about 2,246.839 sq. km., which gradually declined by 2,201.41 sq. km. in 1996, then down to 2168.914 sq km in 2001 and to 2122.421 sq km in 2012. The loss in the mangrove forest in the Indian Sunderbans is about 5.5 %. READ MORE
Where once were mangroves, Javan villages struggle to beat back the sea
INDONESIA - A mangrove forest once surrounded this village on Java’s northern coast. That was before the woods were clear-cut to make way for shrimp and fish farms. The new industry improved the local economy; residents could finally afford the pilgrimage to Mecca. The bounty days were soon to vanish. The mangroves’ decline exposed Mangunharjo to massive erosion. In less than a decade, it wiped away the fishponds and almost sank the village. Local resident Sururi, who like many Indonesians goes by one name, remembers when the sea invaded the land, turning the aquafarms into a muddy lagoon. The shoreline, once 1,500 meters from their homes, the mosque, the school, advanced to within a third of that. In a desperate fight against the march of the sea, Sururi planted mangroves, hoping to stop the erosion and save the village. Step by step, with the support of volunteers and the entire village pitching in, they reclaimed 200 meters (656 feet). READ MORE
Fisheries university plans mangrove tourism project
INDIA - Tourists and students may soon get to observe the city’s threatened mangrove ecosystem from tree-top huts and bamboo walkways. Hoping to increase awareness about mangroves, the Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies (KUFOS) is set to launch a mangrove tourism centre on its Puthuvype campus this year. The proposed Mangrove Demonstration and Tourism Centre, which is pending approval from the State government, will be developed at a cost of ₹27 lakh in 10 acres of mangrove forest at the university’s existing Fisheries Station and Mangrove Research Centre at Puthuvype. The project will include bamboo walkways and bridges across the canal system with resting spots powered with solar lighting. Display boards will be arranged throughout the centre with photographs of local fauna and flora detailing biological information. Guests will be able to sit in tree-top huts equipped with basic facilities and watch the ecosystem’s nocturnal fauna including birds such as night herons and mammals such as otters. READ MORE
How Can Mangrove Restoration Be Successful?
CANADA - My first introduction to mangroves occurred in Vietnam in 2007, when my mother and I toured the Mekong river. In 2009, I volunteered for an organization in Honduras and was once again struck by the beauty of the mangrove ecosystems. Little did I know that I would be working in the Honduran mangroves three years later. As I coordinated a community resilience and mangrove restoration program in Honduras for Falls Brook Centre, we were confronted with environmental difficulties at one of our project sites that went beyond my knowledge and expertise. Looking for mangrove expertise, I made contact with Alfredo Quarto, Co-Executive Director of the Mangrove Action Project, in 2014. The Mangrove Action Project (MAP) aims to, among other things, implement a successful method of mangrove restoration. The results were great. Mangroves began to thrive and regenerate naturally. Black and white mangroves predominated. Two and a half years later, mangroves are approximately 4 m high! The ecosystem is healthier. Crabs, birds and fishes are observed in the site. READ MORE
Treasure in the Mangroves
USA - According to the state Department of Environmental Protection, Florida is home to an estimated 469,000 acres of mangrove forests and this halophyte’s ecological importance simply cannot be overstated. Aside from trapping and cycling organic materials and nutrients from the water, mangroves provide a protected nursery environment for a variety of fish, crustaceans and shellfish and are a favored food site for many marine species as well. Above the water’s surface, mangrove branches serve as rookeries for coastal birds from roseate spoonbills to brown pelicans. All of these characteristics make a mangrove forest an ideal spot to spend a day exploring the wonders of our region’s coastal environments, as Williams tells us in this week’s essay. READ MORE
NOTES FROM OUR VOLUNTEERS
Mangrove to Seagrass, a journey into Thailand’s coastal ecosystems
By David Matyas, MAP Volunteer Intern
THAILAND - During a two month immersion into the mangrove world as a volunteer with the Mangrove Action Project in Trang, southern Thailand I learned there are more than 60 species, they livelihoods for local communities, play a role in coastal protection, and have been greatly reduced in Thailand, mainly due to shrimp farming … It is indeed a unique ecosystem which has had so much research on a whole range of different kinds of issues and many books have been written about this magnificent forest. Some people have even devoted their entire life to protecting it. Personally, I needed time to step back and explore something else. Dr. Barry Bendell monitors seagrass on Koh Phra Thong an island off the coast of Phang-nga Province, Thailand. He is one of MAP’s volunteer scientific advisors, which is how I got in touch with him. READ MORE
Well, today its my last day after a three month rewarding experience here at MAP office Thailand.
I want to thank all of you who shared your knowledge and passion with me and taught me so many things about mangrove conservation and restoration. This internship was a real human experience where I enjoyed to help you out with some projects and to be part of the team during this too short time.
Wish you all the best in the future,
The information provided by MAP is wonderful and highly important to those who are working on Mangroves.
I am lucky to have the information. I have been working with mangroves in our location (A.P., INDIA) since 2009.
I am focusing on diversity, previous and present status, effect of aquaculture, encroachment and also more importantly the identification of secondary metabolites available in Mangroves. working location :
KANDIKUPPA, PANDI,PORA etc
E.G.Dt., A.P, INDIA
Date: Sun, Jun 25, 2017 at 5:00 AM
Subject: Re: MAP News Issue 419, June 24 ,2017 - Autoforwarded
Mangrove.is Photography Contest!
Mangrove Action Project