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Mangrove loss in Sydney Harbour

Updated: Apr 19, 2023

Mangrove loss in Sydney New South Wales , Australia has been significant over the past century, primarily due to urban and industrial development, agriculture, aquaculture, and coastal engineering. Here are some key facts about mangrove loss in NSW:

  1. Mangrove loss in NSW has been significant: It is estimated that over 60% of NSW's mangrove forests have been lost since European settlement in the late 18th century.

  2. Coastal development is a major driver of mangrove loss in NSW: Coastal development, including urbanization, ports, and industrial infrastructure, has led to the clearing and degradation of mangroves in NSW. The construction of seawalls and other coastal engineering projects can also damage mangroves by altering sedimentation patterns and hydrology.

  3. Agriculture and aquaculture have also contributed to mangrove loss in NSW: Agricultural practices such as grazing and cropping can lead to sedimentation and nutrient runoff that can negatively impact mangrove health. Aquaculture, particularly oyster farming, has also contributed to mangrove loss through the clearing of mangroves to create space for oyster beds.

  4. Mangrove loss in NSW has significant ecological and economic impacts: Mangroves provide important ecosystem services, such as carbon sequestration, habitat for fish and other wildlife, and coastal protection. The loss of mangroves in NSW can also have significant economic impacts, particularly for commercial and recreational fishing industries.

  5. Restoration efforts are underway in NSW: There are a number of efforts underway in NSW to restore mangroves, including reforestation projects and the creation of protected areas. However, these efforts face a number of challenges, including limited funding, the need for community involvement and support, and the impacts of ongoing urban and industrial development.

Overall, mangrove loss in NSW is a significant issue that requires ongoing attention and action to address.

Globally Mangroves are disappearing at a faster rate than many other ecosystems: According to the United Nations, mangroves are being lost at a rate of 1-2% per year, which is faster than the rate of loss for other ecosystems such as coral reefs and tropical rainforests.

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