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New map shows blue carbon quantity that storage the world’s mangroves

  • The study also throws data from the  Latin American countries with most loss of mangroves, among them Guatemala, Honduras, Brazil, Mexico and Cuba

Motivated to know the spatial distribution of the carbon reserves on the mangroves soil, so that way this ecosystems can be included in the mitigation efforts to climate change is the reason why twenty researchers from different countries that work for institutions such as Woods Hole Research Center and CATIE (Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center), developed a new global map, with innovative techniques and a spatial fine scale. 

The resulting products of the map are of great importance because they will work for countries that seek to include the mangroves in projects related to payments for environmental services and in the design of effective strategies of mitigation and adaptation to climate change, as well as mangroves conservation.

 “Thanks to this study, for example, we now know that mangroves from the north side of South America, have almost as much carbon as the Asian ones, which have been considered the world’s richest mangroves in carbon. Besides it allows us estimate how much carbon is used when the mangroves are cut to establish other uses in the soil and which ones are the main focal points of deforestation of mangroves,” said Miguel Cifuentes Jara, researcher of the Forest, Biodiversity and Climate Change program of CATIE, who participated in the creation of the map process.

Cifuentes detailed that for the elaboration of the map a great georeferenced database has been compiled on carbon measurements in the mangroves soil and it was developed a new statistical data model based on automatic learning carbon density distribution using complete spatially data at 30 m resolution.


Red numbers in mangroves deforestation

According to map results, more than 75% of the mangroves loss is in Indonesia, Malaysia and Myanmar.

However, Latin American countries such as Guatemala, Honduras, Brazil, Mexico and Cuba are among the ones who have the majority mangroves loss.

“This reaffirm us the urgency of promoting best conservation and restoration mangroves strategies in our region,” said Cifuentes.

If you are interested in reading the complete study, click here.


More information

Karla Salazar Leiva
Information Technology and Communication
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Miguel Cifuentes Jara
Director of Latin American Cathedra of Forestry and Territory Management
Forests, Biodiversity and Climate Change
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