The mangrove forest of the Sundarbans plays a crucial role in protecting the islands as well as the city of Kolkata from natural calamities. It also forms a vital ‘blue carbon’ sink helping mitigation of climate change crisis. Despite their importance, mangrove forests are worldwide under threat. To address this vital issue, SOCEO organised a symposium on the mangroves of the Sundarbans. Leading experts on the subject were invited in order to formulate a coping mechanism to restore the mangroves.
Based on the suggestions formulated by the expert, SOCEO started a model mangrove plantation in two selected mangrove habitat sites in the Sundarbans. In the initial model plantation 10.000 mangrove trees have been planted under scientific and technical guidance of Dr. Punarbasu Chaudhury from Department of Environmental Science, University of Calcutta. The local community members have been involved in the process from the beginning of the initiative to jointly develop and protect the reforested areas. The aim of this model plantation is to prepare the ground for further large scale plantations in the Sundarbans.
The pilot project has been supported by the Consulate General of Germany in Kolkata. SOCEO conceptualised the project and is monitoring its implementation through filial local partners.