2,500 mangroves to be planted in Fujairah

Mangroves will protect the eastern coastline against storm damage and promote ecotourism

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About 2,500 mangrove seedlings will be planted in Fujairah in a bid to revitalise the UAE’s coastal and marine life.

The initiative, announced by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment and Dibba Al Fujairah Municipality on Saturday, aims to increase green cover and rehabilitate the marine habitats of Al Badiya — an area on the east coast of the UAE between Dibba and Khorfakkan.

“Mangroves have always been an important part of our natural heritage,” said Dr Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment.

“They offer a wealth of benefits that range from water filtration and sanitation to enhancing climate change resilience through carbon sequestration and serving as a home for a large number of marine species.”

He said the mangroves would also protect the eastern coastline against storm damage and erosion as well as promote ecotourism due to their rich biodiversity.

Mangroves are said to cover more than 150 square kilometres of the UAE's coastline, acting as a "green lung" for the country's bigger cities, while also providing a habit for wildlife and recreational areas for the general population.

Prior to selecting Al Badiya, the ministry sent a technical team to the area to survey its potential as a mangrove habitat.

The team tested the soil, tidal levels and existing biodiversity to ensure it would be a suitable location for the mangroves. Upon planting the seedlings, the ministry plans to monitor the site and track growth rates.

On Saturday, Dr Al Zeyoudi said the ministry was keen to cultivate mangroves along the country’s coastline.

Hassan Al Yamahi, director general of Dibba Municipality, said the initiative would boost the UAE’s fisheries, enhancing the aesthetic appeal of the area and create a new tourist attraction.