Mangroves' healing touch: They help reduce damage from storms

They absorb more carbon than thought and help reduce damage from storms, experts say

Mangroves being planted last week in the mudflats of the Alue Naga coastal area in Banda Aceh in Indonesia's Aceh province. The trees' capacity to absorb and store carbon represents a huge opportunity for countries like Indonesia and Papua New Guinea
Mangroves being planted last week in the mudflats of the Alue Naga coastal area in Banda Aceh in Indonesia's Aceh province. The trees' capacity to absorb and store carbon represents a huge opportunity for countries like Indonesia and Papua New Guinea to meet their climate mitigation goals. PHOTO: EPA-EFE
Mangroves are cheaper and more resilient as a biological barrier than artificial engineering, say authors of The Nature Conservancy's study.
Mangroves are cheaper and more resilient as a biological barrier than artificial engineering, say authors of The Nature Conservancy's study.PHOTO: ISTOCKPHOTO

Mangroves absorb more carbon from the atmosphere than previously measured and also help mitigate damage in a devastating storm.

Both elements have major policy implications for coastal Asia, particularly South-east Asia, experts say, because they underscore the value of mangroves in buffering low-lying coastal regions against sea-level rise and storm surges, as well as their carbon sequestration potential.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 20, 2020, with the headline 'Mangroves' healing touch'. Subscribe