Learn more about how SeyCCAT is advancing its 4th strategic objective of developing and implementing risk reduction and social resilience plans to adapt to the effects of climate change.

Seychelles remains vulnerable to the impacts of climate change with its vulnerable coastline subject to rising sea levels. With a changing climate, comes a changing ocean with ecosystems threatened by rising temperatures and the acidification. Building resilience and adapting to the impacts of climate change requires significant investment – can blue finance provide an opportunity for resilience?

One of SeyCCAT’s strategic objective is to develop and implement risk reduction and social resilience plans to adapt to the effects of climate change. Alongside, the Development Bank of Seychelles’ blue loans helps Seychelles with the diversification of its economy and build its ability to adapt and build resilience against the impacts of climate change by adopting climate-smart economies which will be achieved through the expansion of the seafood value chains.[1]

It is increasingly clear that it is unhelpful to treat the atmosphere as separate from the ocean. Climate change pervades all aspects of life, including its effects on marine species and must inform marine conservation and management efforts. The research that the Seychelles’ Conservation and Climate Adaptation Trust (SeyCCAT) is funding reveals how climate change may be affecting different species and in turn affect our economy. For one, the spiny lobster is a high value species, in particular, for our local tourism establishments, but the spiny lobsters rely on ocean circulation, and the coral reef habitats for its survival and settlement. The findings from the “Science-based restoration of commercially important spiny lobster habitats to help develop a sustainable fishery” indicates that temperature variability affects parts of the life cycle of the spiny lobster and its coral reef habitats, especially during El Nino events. Hence, it is paramount in considering management efforts of high value species, in situ temperature data must be taken into account as a management indicator which affects both the species and the coral reef habitats.[2]

Second, is Rachel Bristol’s project of “First use of satellite telemetry on small pelagic and abundant seabirds (juvenile Sooty Terns) to define potential Marine Protected Areas through identification of foraging areas used during gaining independence from their parents”  where the higher than average sea surface temperature in the tropical Western Indian Ocean threatened the availability of food for the Sooty Terns which in turn affects the survival of chicks. It is these chicks that will be tagged with satellite trackers to identify and map where the Sooty Terns travel to before returning 5-6 years later to nest in the Seychelles.[3]

Third, through a joint-collaboration with the Nekton Expedition, SeyCCAT is financing a team from the Seychelles Fishing Authority, Stephanie Marie, Clara Belmont, Andrew Souffe and Nathalie Bodin on examining how climate change threatens the plankton communities. In order to ensure good fish quality for consumption the SFA needs to observe climate change is having on the marine ecosystem and, in turn, influence the management plan for sustainable fisheries.

One of the unsung heroes that help us combat the impacts of climate change and promotes ocean health, is mangroves. Mangroves are critical as nurseries and homes to a large variety of fish, crab, shrimp and mollusk species, making them essential to coral reef and commercial fisheries. Furthermore, they seek to stabilize the coastline and prevent erosion from waves and storms; and protect coral reefs and seagrass meadows from being suffocated by sediments. The Blue Grants Fund #3 is shining the limelight on mangroves by funding community-led and school-led activities to learn about this ecosystem and efforts to rehabilitate the area of mangroves in different districts which will result in a 52- minutes documentary. SeyCCAT will soon be launching a new ‘blue carbon’ project to assess the carbon storage of our carbon sinks such as mangroves and seagrass meadows. Additionally, SeyCCAT will be financing climate change guides and educate people about climate change, from understanding the difference between mitigation and adaptation and what we can do to maintain a sustainable lifestyle.

Credit: The Nature Conservancy

SeyCCAT and other collaborators are uniting to bring an exciting event “Talking Climate Chaos” where we provide an opportunity to raise awareness about climate change. The event will take place in January 2020 but we are providing you the opportunity to decide the content of the programme by expressing your interest on what you would like to present at the event! It could be a song, artwork, a poem or the findings of your research. Express your interest by registering here:

 

[1]https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/feature/2018/10/29/sovereign-blue-bond-issuance-frequently-asked-questions

[2]Leo’s paper: Leo Barret’s paper on “Spiny lobster (Panulirus sp.) life cycle – a review and fisheries management implications

[3]https://wildbirdconservation.wordpress.com/2019/07/05/seyccat-sponsored-sooty-tern-tracking-project-makes-early-progress/?fbclid=IwAR3ZYxy9k2cZjuD0mt4r0nNfdkU1WeB1vnZhRm2HPDkl2QzkFKddxmLA0wo