Jul 26, 2017 | BY Chris Couve
July 26 is International Mangrove Day. Mangroves are one of the world’s most vital ecosystems, and play a crucial role in mitigating climate change.
Mangroves are climate superheroes. Oceans are responsible for 83% of global carbon sequestration, mostly concentrated along shorelines where mangroves are a keystone species.
When mangroves are destroyed, an entire ecosystem collapses, releasing CO2 and methane.
Miracles of life, mangroves grow between land and sea and provide a biodiversity nursery for marine and terrestrial species. Many coral reef fishes rely on mangroves during certain stages of their lives. Mangroves also filter runoff which allows sea grasses and coral reefs to thrive, as sedimentation smothers corals and causes them to die. These flowering trees give abundant food, medicine and shelter to coastal communities in over 100 countries. Mangroves can even turn deserts into oases.
Despite their vital importance, mangroves have been deforested at three times the rate of rainforests, mainly for charcoal production, shrimp farming, and development. Making up less than 1% of forests globally, mangroves are now at risk of extinction.
But we can change things.
International NGO Worldview International Foundation (WIF) has been pioneering mangrove restoration since 2012.
Blockchain startup Lykke has partnered with WIF to launch the world’s first mangrove backed cryptocurrency. Heyerdahl Climate Pioneers (TREE) is a digital token representing a mangrove planted on 1 sqm in Thor Heyerdahl Climate Park in Myanmar, managed by WIF.
TREE empowers anyone to invest in the restoration of mangroves with the press of a button. Just activate Lykke Wallet on your phone (iOS & Android). Lykke reserves 10% of funds raised as a liquidity buffer, which turns TREE into a stable cryptocurrency that can be traded 24/7 and sent to anyone without fees. TREE will also be accepted as a means of payment by pioneering partners, including Starboard, Misool Eco Resort, and Wonderfruit Festival.
According to WIF founder Dr. Arne Fjortoft, “the urgent need to restore at least 20% of the world’s mangrove forests was among the key issues of the June 2016 United Nations Ocean Conference. Mangroves are nature’s most promising solution to combatting impacts of sea level rise, and maintaining healthy shorelines and water quality for coral reefs and seagrass, as well as other valuable ecosystem services.”
See this inspiring Miracle Mangrove video by Starboard, which plants one mangrove per surfboard.
Anyone can be Climate Positive by investing in mangroves. Each mangrove sequesters up to 1 tonne of CO2 in 20 years, and has community and biodiversity co-benefits of over 1000x, meaning that for every $1 spent on mangroves, the world receives over $1000 in benefits.
At the closing of the recent Protect Blue event at the Green Surf Festival in Noli, legendary big wave champion Chris Bertish announced his “Revive 365” pledge to invest in a mangrove every day for three years to be Climate Positive For Life. “A forest is 120 trees, which means we plant 3 forests a year for three years to mitigate a lifetime of carbon emissions,” Chris explained.
Please join TREE-volution to restore a billion mangroves within a decade and make a tangible impact on climate.
Written by Alan Laubsch – Lykke