Workers at a mangrove nursery in Dam, a coastal town in Pakistan’s Balochistan province. Photo Credit: Ayaz Khan for Mongabay.

Environment Pakistan26. March 2024

Mangroves Are Exceptionally Expanding Here

In contrast to the rest of the world, mangroves have expanded considerably in Pakistan over the past few decades.

“The wetland restoration efforts demonstrate Pakistan’s commitment to environmental conservation and sustainable development. The success of these initiatives is evident in the increase coverage of mangrove forests in Pakistan and the improved health of these ecosystems,” says Bilquees Gul of the University of Karachi, Pakistan.

Whereas the rest of the world saw a negative mangrove trend over the past few decades that is only now slowing to a halt, Pakistan reveals a threefold expansion between 1986 and 2020. A recorded 48,331 hectares of mangrove existed in Pakistan in 1986; as of 2020, there were approximately 143,930 hectares. These mangroves are vital to local fishing communities, which rely on them for fuel, shelter, and fish. Moreover, these communities often play a significant role in planting new mangroves and protecting existing ones. Overall, Pakistan has a goal of expanding its mangroves to 350,000 hectares. “Indeed, this is a challenging task to complete, but we believe we can achieve this given our restoration track record,” says Sadiq Gill, a divisional forest officer with the Sindh Forest Department.


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