Blue Carbon Financing of Mangrove Conservation in the Abidjan Convention Region: A Feasibility Study

opportunity. To help fill that knowledge gap, this report aims to synthesize the current state of information on the blue carbon stocks maintained in mangrove forests in West, Central and Southern Africa, and estimate the potential financial benefits for communities and countries to secure blue carbon payments from the international community. Such support would help implement the region’s mangrove conservation policy objectives, as well as relevant targets of the Sustainable Development Goals. To achieve this objective, the report is organized as follows: • A brief contextual summary of the current state of international payments for blue carbon storage. • A description of the cultural importance of mangroves in order to highlight the value of their conservation, beyond economics, to the local communities. • An estimation of the size and distribution of blue carbon mangrove stocks in West, Central and Southern Africa based on a synthesis of available data sets, and the potential size of payments that could be secured to maintain these stocks. • On this basis, a road map of recommendations is proposed to support interested countries in West, Central and Southern Africa to explore the potential to secure blue carbon payments for mangrove conservation.

For example, although the continent is home to 22 per cent of the world’s mangroves, it has been the subject of only 7 per cent of the literature that has attempted to value the services, such as blue carbon, that this ecosystem provides (Vegh, Jungwiwattanaporn et al., 2014 – see Table 3 below). Objectives of this report: Given the significant benefits of blue carbon storage that mangroves provide to the international community, and its growing willingness to pay for this service, it is surprising that so little is known about blue carbon stocks in West, Central and Southern Africa and the steps that communities and countries in the region would need to take in order to explore this

Table 3: Comparison of mangrove coverage to fraction of ecosystem services valuation literature

Percentage of world’s mangroves

Percentage of studies

22% 30% 38% 9%

7% 19% 63% 10%

Africa Americas Asia Pacific

Source: Vegh, Jungwiwattanaporn et al. (2014)


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