Balancing Development and Coastal Conservation: Mangroves in Mozambique
"Despite their well-researched and widely recognised socioeconomic and ecological value, mangroves are among the world’s most threatened vegetation types. More than a fifth of the world’s mangroves have been lost over the past 30 years alone, and many of the remaining forests are degraded. The depletion of mangroves in many developing countries in particular is a cause for serious environmental and economic concern. This stems from the fact that mangroves play a vital role in moderating monsoonal tidal floods as well as other forms of coastal protection. Mangroves support numerous forms of fauna and flora, as well as estuarine and near-shore fisheries. They also sequester large amounts of carbon dioxide, which helps to mitigate climate change. Consequently, the continuing degradation and depletion of this vital resource will reduce not only terrestrial and aquatic production and wildlife habitats, but also the stability of coastal forests, thus threatening the livelihoods of people who depend on their ecosystem services and functions."