ABU DHABI, Upon the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and the support of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler's Representative in Al Dhafra Region, and Chairman of the Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi, today participated in planting mangrove seedlings on Al Aryam Island in Abu Dhabi.

The activity coincides with the UAE's observation of the National Environment Day, running this year under the theme, 'Nature-based Solutions'.

Sheikh Hamdan has recently announced a programme to plant 15 million mangrove seedlings in Abu Dhabi over the coming 25 years, through the joint efforts of the Department of Municipalities and Transport, the Al Dhafra Municipality, the Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi, and the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, ADNOC.

The programme is projected to remove around 200,000 tonnes of carbon emissions, which equals the total annual electricity consumption of over 20,000 households.

Mangroves also help reduce the impact of climate change and play a key role in protecting the marine ecosystem. They also provide an important habitat for embracing many types of aquatic and terrestrial flora and fauna and act as nursery grounds for a wide variety for Abu Dhabi's fish stocks.

The sturdy root systems of mangrove trees help form a natural barrier against violent storm surges and floods. They support eco-tourism and are valued annually at hundreds of millions of Dirhams, according to studies and research on Blue Carbon and environmental services provided by the Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi.

Mangroves are known for their ability to store carbon at rates much faster than tropical forests, helping to mitigate the effects of climate change.

Contributing to the activity onsite were Major General Faris Khalaf Al Mazrouei, Commander-in-Chief of the Abu Dhabi Police, Ahmed Matar Al Dhaheri, Director of the Office of the Ruler's Representative in Al Dhafra, Isa Hamad Bushehab, Advisor to the Ruler's Representative in Al Dhafra, Mohamed Ali Al Mansoori, Director-General of the Al Dhafra Municipality, Colonel Hamdan Saif Al Mansoori, Director of the Al Dhafra Region Police Directorate, and several other officials.

Source: Emirates News Agency