(CPV) – International experts in the field of climate change and coastal ecosystems in South East Asia region (SEAR), government officials, and representatives from the Mekong Delta region were recently gathered on for a training course and workshop in Can Tho city.
Under the sponsorship of the Asian-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN), the Asian Institute of Technology in Vietnam in cooperation with the United Nations University, Institute of Water Environment and Health (UNU-INWEH) – Canada and host of the international and regional partners is implementing the ENGAGE program (Ecosystem Based Adaptation Management and Governance for Sustainable approach of Coastal Ecosystems).
The training course, with participation of more than 30 experts, researchers, lecturers, officers and local government officials from Canada, India, Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand, US and Vietnam, focused on theoretical understanding and practical approaches to address and understand characteristics, ecology and functions of coastal ecosystems and ecosystem based on adaptation as a management tool.
Coastal ecosystems bordering the tropical coastlines play an important role in maintaining holistic environmental conditions for the coastal communities. These ecosystems mainly comprise of mangrove forest, swamps, marine tidal forests and play a key role in sheltering the shoreline between freshwater and the saline.
SEAR countries constitute the largest habitat for coastal diversity, including mangroves. Indonesia alone houses more than 20% of the world’s mangroves. Recent debates in sustainability science endorses the need of ecosystem based framework for resource management and planning as it appropriates various ecological services and benefits received by the social capital.
In order to create an enabling environment for sustainable management of coastal ecosystems in SEAR, the regional training cum workshop discussed and debated host of issues relevant for Ecosystems Based Adaptation approach for Sustainable Management and Governance of Coastal Ecosystems.
The program aims to strengthen the capacity of professionals, academics, managers and institutions, while assessing needs and gaps analysis gaps in capacity needs for ecosystem based adaptation approach for sustainanble coastal zone management in the region.
On the long term, organizers hope to create a discussion forum or a platform to facilitate open dialogue platform for experts, specialists and policy officials in addressing common inquiries on climate change impacts and ecosystems based approach aligning with coastal development planning and management including emphasis on traditional practices and new methodologies for sustainable management of the coastal ecosystems, promote and encourage exchanges of knowledge between different stakeholders in the region.
“The ENGAGE program is providing a platform for participants to network and exchange experiences on best management practices for sustainable coastal zone management. UNU-INWEH strongly believes that data, information and knowledge sharing and alligning with regional partners is vital to implementation of the sustainanble development goals (SDG’s) aiming to enhance the sustainability of coastal ecosystems (SDG14) and also SDG17 outlining a partnership based model to enactment of the SDG agenda”, according to Dr. Nidhi Nagabhatla, UNU-INWEH, Canada./.