Blue carbon science for sustainable development
“Indonesia is losing 52,000 hectares of mangroves per year, or the equivalent of three football fields of mangroves per week,” said Daniel Murdiyarso, Principal Scientist at the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR).
Murdiyarso was one of three speakers at the recent event titled, Mangrove ecosystems in Indonesia: A strategic resource for local sustainable economy and adaptation to climate change, held on the occasion of World Wetlands Day. The event was hosted at the Italian Cultural Institute in Jakarta with the support of the Embassy of Italy.
Indonesia is losing 52,000 hectares of mangroves per year, or the equivalent of three football fields of mangroves per week.
Coastal blue carbon ecosystems are the planet’s greatest carbon storehouses. They are capable of capturing and storing excessive atmospheric carbon with burial rates 20 times greater than any other terrestrial ecosystem, including boreal and tropical forests.
But when cleared or degraded, blue carbon ecosystems can transform into worrisome emission sources. Currently, global greenhouse gas emissions from unsustainable coastal development amount to one billion per year.
One-fifth of that (200 million tons CO2-eq) is produced by the country of Indonesia alone- the equivalent of 40 million fewer cars on the roads, according to Murdiyarso.