Overview of our mangrove planting project.
In 1999, Tokio Marine & Nichido launched the mangrove planting project in five Southeast Asian countries and nation of Fiji as part of Tokio Marine Fire Insurance's 120th Anniversary Commemorative Events and we have planted 6,824 hectares of mangroves. In 2009, the company has begun the third phase of the project with the target of planting a further 2,300 hectares by the end of March 2013,adding India as a new area. This project has been implemented in partnership with the following three groups:
OISCA International (President: Dr. Yoshiko Nakano)
A collaborative international group established in 1961 to offer cooperation in human resources development and nation building in developing countries. OISCA is promoting human resources development, rural development, environmental conservation and environmental education in Asia Pacific regions. They also operate mangrove planting project in countries such as Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines and Fiji.
Action for Mangrove Reforestation (ACTMANG) (Chairperson: Mr. Seiji Suda)
A collaborative international NGO established in 1992 to contribute to mangrove reproduction and afforestation. ACTMANG pursues research, afforestation and reproduction of mangroves mainly in Vietnam and Myanmar.
International Society for Mangrove Ecosystems (ISME; Executive Secretary: Shigeru Baba)
ISME is an international non-profit and non-governmental society established in August, 1990, to promote research and study for the protection of mangroves and the global ecosystems, through the efforts of scientists and various organizations. Headquartered in Okinawa, it has been carrying out its worldwide research and study on mangroves in such regions as Iriomote Island, Southeast Asia, the South Pacific, South America. In the third phase of the afforestation project, it is in charge of India.
What are mangroves?
Called 'forests of the sea', 'mangroves' refer to the dense plants growing in saline coastal habitats and river estuaries of the tropics and subtropics in Asia, Africa, South America, and other areas. Mangrove forests are constantly and rapidly decreasing through large-scale deforestation - for example, to clear space for shrimp aquaculture ponds, provide timber for factory and road construction, and make charcoal materials. Over the past 30 to 40 years, approximately 80% of mangrove forests have disappeared (depending on country).
(1) Environmental protection
Mangroves play a key role in the removal of CO2, one of the primary gases responsible for climate change. This has drawn much attention in recent years. They also help growing rich ecosystem around the planting sites and contribute to the conservation of biodiversity.
(2) Disaster prevention
During the Indian Ocean Tsunami Disaster of December 2004, mangroves served as a wave break, protecting the lives of many people. Thus, it can be said that the mangrove planting project is of crucial importance in disaster prevention.
(3) Regional contributions and international exchange
By reforesting mangroves which provide resources indispensable to the daily lives of local residents, we have been able to bring improvements and greater stability to local communities. Moreover, we have been making efforts to foster international exchange with local people through our Mangrove Afforestation Tours.
(4) Raising environmental awareness
We have been proactively raising environmental awareness inside and outside the company through our mangrove afforestation activities.