Mangrove replanting initiative in Ecuador

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Ecuador's lush mangroves at the Pacific Ocean coast have been suffering for long the effects of commercial shrimp farming that, together with the government's shortsighted vision and irresponsible behaviour on the issue, is to be blamed for the destruction of this valuable ecosystem regarding biodiversity, local communities' livelihoods and coastal protection (see WRM Bulletins 14, 21 and 24).

Ecuadorian and international environmental NGOs have repeatedly expressed their concern over such a destructive process. Now Mangrove Action Project (MAP) and the Ecuadorian NGO FUNDECOL are dealing with a project to restore the once magnificent mangrove forest of Muisne. MAP is a worldwide network and pro-active coalition that is addressing the serious issues associated with global mangrove forest loss. This specific programme aims at drawing national attention to mangrove loss and local community needs, support local initiatives on mangrove sustainable use, draw media attention to the plight of the coastal zones, rehabilitate mangrove zones degraded by industrial shrimp farming, draw a spotlight on issues which will benefit by this kind of actions, and educate volunteers coming from all around the world, who will gain in both knowledge and experience.

The programme, which counts on a limited budget but is high in volunteer involvement, will start next September and will last around 10 to 12 days. Participants will be involved in important environmental restoration work, while meeting and working together with some local Ecuadorian community people who themselves are dedicated to restoring the mangrove forest.

Those interested in participating in this initiative, please contact Alfredo Quarto, email:

Article based on information from: Alfredo Quarto, MAP; 27/6/2000,