Staff ReporterWednesday, November 21, 2012 - Karachi—The 9th Regional Steering Committee of the Mangroves for the Future (MFF) initiative was inaugurated in Karachi, Pakistan. Representatives of the eight MFF member countries, India, Indonesia, Maldives, Pakistan, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam convened in the coastal city of Karachi to discuss and present the progress in coastal management efforts in their respective countries. They were joined by MFF outreach countries Bangladesh, Cambodia and Myanmar. The theme for the year 2012 is: Coastal Resilience in the wake of Climate Change through Private Sector Engagements.
In his welcome remarks MFF Coordinator, Dr. Steen Christensen said, All over the world, coastal ecosystems are faced with climate change challenges and this is particularly true for developing countries. Nearly half the global population lives in coastal areas and about 70 percent in east Asia depend on coastal resources for their livelihoods. It will require collective efforts from all possible sectors to mitigate these effects and ensure protection, food security and adequate livelihood opportunities for vulnerable communities, he added. He applauded the Government of Pakistan for taking commendable measures in good governance for coastal ecosystem management since becoming a MFF member country in 2010.
In her inaugural speech Aban Marker Kabraji, IUCN Regional Director Asia briefed the session about escalating pressures from human development on coastal ecosystems. Human activities are contributing to the vulnerability of coastal systems and communities to the effects of climate change, she said. Former Vice President IUCN and Regional Councillor Javed Jabbar Inspector General of Forests MOCC, Pakistan, Syed Mehmood Nasir and other also spoke.