New floating mangrove project raises green hopes

Project hopes to significantly reduce carbon emissions

Qatar’s mangrove project could help to significantly reduce carbon emissions.

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UNESCO, together with private partners in Qatar, is working on a floating mangrove project to significantly reduce carbon emissions.

Dr Benno Böer, UNESCO ecological sciences adviser, said that the project would develop carbon sequestration prototypes in Qatar, which could be used in different parts of the world.

“They don’t necessarily have to be planted here,” he said. There was a need to conduct scientific research first. Dr Böer said several issues could be resolved including the amount of carbon that can be sequestrated, its cost and the anticipated environmental impact.

“We need to conduct a research, hopefully with the involvement of Qatar University. In the past, mangroves covered around 32mn hectares of land globally; now, only 15mn hectares are left,” he said during the launch at Marina Promenade in Lusail City.

It will also produce results on the impact of large-scale planting of floating mangroves, which can be planted only in tropical and sub-tropical regions, including places with enough nutrients in the water.

Citing an earlier report of this paper, he said carbon emissions in Qatar reach 85mn tonnes per year. One hectare of mangroves can sequestrate only about 1.5mn tonnes of carbon. Citizens of Qatar have the highest per capita carbon footprint in the world.

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