On World Mangrove Day 2017, governments from tropical regions rich in mangrove habitat issued statements recognizing the important role these forests play in daily life and nature.
Bangladesh shares the world’s largest mangrove forest – the Sunderbans – with India. It is one of the last strongholds of critically endangered species including the Royal Bengal Tiger and the Gangetic Dolphin. The Sunderbans not only serve as a transition between marine and terrestrial environment but also provide protection to the most vulnerable people of the coastal areas of Bangladesh from the impacts of climate change, by attenuating wave energy, cyclones and storm surges and stabilizing shorelines from erosion. Restoring and conserving these vital ecosystems is key to sustaining both coastal communities and biodiversity. It is also an accurate representation of how environmental issues are not defined by geographic boundaries. In order to protect the Sunderbans, Bangladesh, under the leadership of Honourable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will continue to work together with global community to hold its elimination. Ministry of Environment and Forest is highly committed to conserve the Sunderbans and mangrove habitats. I hope with the Global Mangrove Alliance (GMA) partnering with Mangroves for the Future (MFF) will significantly strengthen our joint efforts to conserve and restore this unique mangrove ecosystem.
Anwar Hossain Manju, M.P.
Minister of Environment and Forest, Bangladesh