A mangrove rehabilitation and replanting project will be shortly underway for two of the Marshall Islands’ wetlands of international importance, Namdrik and Jaluit Atoll. The main objective of the project is to increase community resilience to the impacts of climate change on both atolls through restoring some of the existing degraded mangrove areas on both atolls. The project will also help to raise awareness of the value of mangroves conservation and restoration as an important climate change adaptation measure through their role as coastal buffers and their significance for food security.
Most of the project activities will build up to the celebration of World Wetlands Day 2013, when mangrove replanting and awareness campaigns are planned for both schools and the general public on both atolls. Through the project, arrangements will be underway to have the year 2013 recognized as the year of “Mangroves as an adaptation measure.”
It is expected that the project will build resilience to climate change through improved protection of shore and coastlines and by providing a buffer against strong wind and waves, and decreased vulnerability to high tides/flooding events. The mangroves will also provide protection to crops, gardens and communities from salt spray, storm surges and extreme events, increase community resilience to climate change and sea level rise, provide potential sustainable aquaculture for food security and will increase awareness of mangroves and their role in climate change adaptation.
This project has been made possible through funding assistance from the Australian Government under their International Climate Change Adaptation Initiative (ICCAI).
A report by Vainuupo Jungblut, Ramsar Programme Officer - Oceania. Photo courtesy: Senator Mattlan Zackhras & Vainuupo Jungblut