Environmental Recovery and Mangrove Conservation: Post Indian Ocean Tsunami Policy Responses in South and Southeast Asia
The Indian Ocean Tsunami in 2004 was a mega-disaster that triggered massive disruption of ecological services across the South & Southeast Asian Coast. Particularly, loss of precious mangroves was some of the most discussed environmental consequence of the event. In many South & Southeast Asian countries, mangrove bio-shielded the coastal communities and saved human lives and properties, however in doing so, it also suffered irreversible damage. Importantly, the Indian Ocean Tsunami was also important event in the context of rejuvenation of an already degraded mangrove ecosystems surrounding the Indian Ocean as many countries reemphasized the protective role of mangroves and other coastal forests and developed integrated coastal zone management policies. This chapter examines the role of mangrove forests in disaster risk reduction in four most affected countries (Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India & Thailand) and analyzes the policy amendments in the respective countries pertaining to mangrove conservation & restoration in the post Tsunami recovery period. The analysis was conducted based on six policy principles of mangrove conservation & restoration. It was observed that Indonesia & India responded the Tsunami event with significant amendments of its existing policies; whereas the policy responses of Sri Lanka & Thailand were not adequate to the purpose.
KeywordsCoastal Zone management policies Environmental recovery Indian Ocean tsunami Mangrove conservation
The first author greatly acknowledges MEXT (MONBUKAGAKUSHO) scholarship provided by the Japanese Government for conducting research in the Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies of Kyoto University. The authors also acknowledge the support of GOCE-ARS (Sustainability/survivability science for a resilience society to extreme weather conditions) and Studies on the Connectivity of Hilltop, Human and Ocean (CoHHO) program of Kyoto University.
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