In 2019, the Government of Seychelles had indicated its desire to include blue carbon, in particular mangroves and seagrass, in its NDC.
Although ambitious for a small island nation, existing and new partners responded to this call to support the Government of Seychelles to integrate blue carbon into its NDC. The Pew Charitable Trust agreed to provide a grant and technical expertise from its Coastal Wetlands team and The Nature Conservancy’s International Climate Policy team to Seychelles through SeyCCAT.
The project was highlighted at the COP 25 that had been dubbed the “Blue COP.” Ambassador Jumeau delivered the keynote address and underlined that blue carbon refers to mangroves, seagrass and salt marshes, and noted that addressing these ecosystems aligns with the growing support for nature-based solutions, and awareness of oceans as part of the solution to the climate crisis. Jumeau stressed the need to understand the role of ocean protection in the fight against climate change, underlining that when small island developing states (SIDS) act as “Big Ocean States,” ambition increases 1000-fold. Noting that huge ocean spaces absorb more carbon than land, he stressed that a healthy ocean acts as a climate buffer as well as the need to reduce emissions.
The Pew Charitable Trusts funded project focuses on seagrass meadows as critical habitats for addressing the impacts of climate change.
The project includes both national and international partners, such as the University of Seychelles – Blue Economy Research Institute (BERI), University of Oxford, Deakin University and local NGOs, such as Island Conservation Society.