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Valuing Coastal Ecosystems as Economic Assets











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    Empowering women and coastal communities for a healthy, resilient and productive mangrove forest ecosystem in the Rewa Delta, Fiji
    XV World Forestry Congress, 2-6 May 2022
    2022
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    Mangroves provide a number of ecosystem services that are vital to the sustainability of coastal communities and livelihoods in the Rewa Delta, and are a high priority in climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies throughout the world; having exceptionally high carbon stocks of any ecosystem on earth. The loss of mangroves to the local and global community would not only mean the loss of their many individual benefits, but also the exacerbated eroding of the collective value of these services. The effects of climate change and global warming have not spared the six communities of the Rewa Delta (Nasilai, Natila, Naivakacau, Waicoka, Narocake and Muanaira) as it has eroded their shorelines. This has incited the villagers to observe the value of protecting mangroves and has encouraged these communities to plant mangroves and restore mangrove areas that have been cut down and damaged by cyclones. Subsequently, most of the women residing in the Rewa Delta rely on these mangrove ecosystems as sources of income and food for their families through fishing, catching crabs and collecting shellfish. Thus, women play such a critical role in the conservation of ecosystems; however, their contribution is often overlooked and undervalued, as such women in the Rewa Delta struggle to be included in community decision-making. Nevertheless, the project allows women to lead and advocate on environmental issues that might impact their lives adversely, improving security, skills development and education of both women and girls in the community. Hence, protecting and restoring their mangrove ecosystem is the most effective method for these six communities to benefit from this ecosystem socially, environmentally and economically. Keywords: mangroves, women, ecosystem services, sustainability, climate change, coastal communities, livelihoods, rewa delta ID: 3486331
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    Article
    Planting design, survival and blue carbon stock of mangrove plantations in Banacon Island, Philippines
    XV World Forestry Congress, 2-6 May 2022
    2022
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    Mangrove forests have the capacity to store and sequester vast amount of atmospheric carbon. Coastal reforestation in the tropics became more popular because of this ecosystem service and their value to protect human from the impacts of tsunami and storm surge. To illustrate mangrove’s blue carbon potential in view of planting design, carbon stock assessment of 20-year old Rhizophora stylosa plantations was done. Tree and sediment carbon stocks were determined using standard nested plot technique. These parameters were further examined in terms of the plant spacing used during the plantation establishment, namely: 0.5m x 0.5m; and 1.0m x 1.0m. Key findings showed that plantations that were established with closer spacing i.e. 0.5m x 0.5m spacing have higher stand density values than those with 1.0m x 1.0m interval by about 23,900 trees ha-1. Survival rate was also significantly higher in the former than the latter with a mean difference of 23%. In view of total carbon stocks, 0.5m x 0.5m spaced stands contain 276.8±11.6 tC ha-1, of which sediment has contributed about 110.1 tC ha-1 (40%). On the other hand, stands of 1.0m x 1.0m spacing have only 157.6±40.1 tC ha-1, wherein 21.3 tC ha-1 (48.2%) is attributable to sediments. Overall findings suggested that planting at a closer spacing (0.5m distance) could produce larger sediment carbon stock. A significant mean difference of 88.80 tC ha-1 was computed in favor of 0.5m x 0.5m stand, which is indicative of two possible reasons: a) thicker vegetation provides larger source organic material through litterfall; b) more interlinked roots help stabilize sediment from erosion while effectively trapping more organic material from other sources during tidal movements. ID: 3477110
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    Sustainable management of Miombo woodlands
    Food security, nutrition and wood energy
    2018
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    The Miombo woodland is a vast African dryland forest ecosystem covering close to 2.7 million km2 across southern Africa (Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe). The woodlands are characterized by the dominance of Brachystegia species, either alone or in association with Julbernardia and Isoberlinia species. It is estimated that the woodlands – through their numerous goods and services which include various non-wood forest products (NWFPs) (e.g. insects, mushrooms, fruits, tubers, medicine, fodder, honey, seeds) and woodfuels, which, for simplicity, will be referred to as non-timber forest products, or NTFPs, throughout the publication – sustain the livelihoods of more than 100 million rural poor and 50 million urban people. The charcoal sector alone employs vast numbers of rural people and offers additional income to many poor rural families. Communities moreover rely directly on the woodlands for food and nutrition. NWFPs add vital micro- and macronutrients to local diets and contribute to diversified food systems, while woodfuel is essential for cooking and sterilizing, thus ensuring proper nutrient absorption and providing clean water for drinking. Forests and trees, if managed sustainably, are an important source of resilience for rural people in the Miombo woodlands, supporting households to absorb and recover from climatic or economic calamities and contributing to resolving the underlying causes of food insecurity, undernutrition and poverty by providing nutritious edible products and woodfuel for cooking in addition to conserving biodiversity and water resources, buffering extreme weather conditions and preventing land degradation and desertification. Generally speaking, it is now accepted that forests managed for both timber and NTFPs retain more biodiversity and resilience than forests managed solely for one aspect, e.g. timber and exotic timber plantations. However, a growing population in high need of agricultural land and unsustainable use and overharvesting of natural resources in parts of the Miombo woodlands, combined with climate change impacts (e.g. drought, fires), leave insufficient time for many trees and associated species to regenerate naturally, posing a serious threat to the products and services of the woodlands, and to the livelihoods depending on them. Compounding the problem and hindering development of the Miombo ecosystem, are: i) lack of an enabling policy environment; ii) unsustainable management; iii) limited willingness and ability to pay for and access to energy-efficiency technologies; iv) inadequate awareness and information, including technical capacity; v) high poverty levels; and vi) limited access to microcredit facilities. With the Committee on World Food Security’s endorsement of the recommendations presented in the High Level Panel of Experts Report on Sustainable Forestry for Food Security and Nutrition in late 2017 – which include promoting multifunctional landscapes, integrated food-forestry systems, and research on associated linkages, among other things – forests and trees are expected to play a greater role in future land-use decisions and related policies. This paper provides an overview of these linkages in the context of the Miombo woodlands, in the hope that future land use, policy decisions and financial investments are shaped to support the contributions of forests and trees to the health and livelihoods of communities in the ecoregion. The following key messages were formulated: • Forests and trees, if managed sustainably, are an important source of resilience for rural people in the Miombo woodlands, supporting households to absorb and recover from climatic or economic calamities and contributing to resolving the underlying causes of food insecurity, undernutrition and poverty by providing nutritious edible products and woodfuel for cooking in addition to conserving biodiversity and water resources, buffering extreme weather conditions and preventing land degradation and desertification. • Current data bases referring to the value of the Miombo must be analysed and used as evidence to improve policy-making. • Miombo woodlands may be dominant (spatially), but they have not been addressed as a single unit but as part of the region’s forests. They form part of the overall forestry strategies and no specific mention in the conventions does not suggest that their importance is underplayed. • The management of Miombo will require some changes in management structures, especially in providing benefits emerging from trade in forest products to local managers. • Local forest managers should play a greater role in allocating resources for feedstock for charcoal production.

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