Tens of thousands of mangroves will be planted and coral gardens cultivated in a bid to reduce the impact of climate change.
Some 30,000 mangrove trees will be planted to develop the marine areas of the UAE, the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment said on Wednesday.
The mangroves will help prevent erosion in coastal areas and the corals will serve as an incubator for marine species as part of the ministry’s objectives for the Year of Zayed.
“Mangrove trees play an effective role in reducing carbon emissions and contribute to minimizing the impacts of marine natural disasters. They are also incubators for many marine species, and help maintain the ecological balance, while protecting species from the risk of extinction, in addition to supporting and encouraging ecotourism,” said Dr Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment.
“Coral gardens provide a natural habitat and an incubator for several marine species, and the ministry has succeeded in cultivating 24 species of corals.”
The ministry is also keen on working with partners to develop sustainable ecotourism opportunities.
The initiatives to safeguard the biodiversity of the country are part of the ministry's 2017-2021 strategy.
The ministry will coordinate with local authorities in each emirate to determine the locations for both the mangroves and the coral gardens.
“The Ministry of Climate Change and the Environment’s announcement of the two initiatives to expand the numbers of mangroves and coral gardens in the country stems from their environmental importance,” he said.
Developing ecotourism was also part of the ministry’s strategic plan since a sustainable model would reduce pressure on resources caused by regular tourism.
“We seek to focus on such efforts and highlight the most important areas that tourists can enjoy in the country,” Dr Al Zeyoudi said.