Mangrove forests have huge blue carbon potential: ministry

Mangrove forests have huge blue carbon potential: ministry

Documentation—A man carries mangrove seedlings at Bahowo Bunaken Darat Beach, Manado, North Sulawesi, on Tuesday (September 27, 2022). (ANTARA PHOTO/Adwit B Pramono/hp)

Jakarta (ANTARA) - Mangrove forests have huge blue carbon potential in terms of both aboveground and belowground biomass, according to the Environment and Forestry Ministry.

Blue carbon can potentially accelerate Indonesia's efforts to reduce greenhouse emissions, a commitment that has been outlined in the nationally determined contributions (NDC) document, director general of sustainable forest management at the ministry, Agus Justianto, explained here on Friday.

"Coastal ecosystem development and mangrove restoration are among the adaption and mitigation efforts against climate change for supporting the target of reducing greenhouse emissions," he said during a discussion on mangrove restoration as a solution to national climate change.

Blue carbon is carbon that is absorbed and stored in sea and coastal ecosystems. Biomass like leaves, roots, and trunks, as well as mangrove sediment and seagrass meadows, can store four to five times more carbon than forests on land.

Justianto said that blue carbon that is stored for long periods is different from green carbon stored in forests for many years.

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According to him, climate change mitigation can be made more effective if green carbon development on land forests can be followed by blue carbon development and utilization.

Since 2010, Indonesia has shown its serious commitment to nurturing mangrove forests through reforestation and restoration. In 2020, coastal ecosystem protection became a strategic step in the recovery process from the COVID-19 pandemic through the organization of a labor-intensive activity of mangrove planting in 34 provinces across Indonesia.

"The labor-intensive program can increase the local economy during the pandemic. The movement of mangrove reforestation is carried out involving all aspects of the government, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and private parties through the corporate social responsibility (CSR) program at the central and regional levels," he explained.

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