Nuku’alofa – October 15, 2019: 12pm (Enviro News): The importance of having mangroves and coastal trees along the waterfront must be understood, Tonga’s mangrove specialist has stated.
Mr Hoifua Aholadi made the comments while speaking with students from the Robert C Seamen’s vessel who were in Tonga in the last three days as part of their Seamen expedition and learning.
While taking the students through the Popua Mangrove Nursery in Ma’ufanga, Hoifua said it is important to plant mangroves and coastal plants now to replace those that have been destroyed or killed.
“This is important because these trees serve to protect our environment and us,” he told the students.
“Mangroves act as buffers along the coastlines and they protect us from the tidal waves and the rushing sea water that do hit us at times.
“At the same time the trees help in reducing the amount of carbon in the air and increase the output of oxygen for all of us.
“That is why it is important for people to understand the importance of keeping our trees and replanting replacements when they are destroyed.”
Hoifua told the students that the Department of Environment continues to monitor mangroves plantations around the Kingdom and works with stakeholders in replanting programs.
He took the students to see the work being done in the Western Division villages of Kolovai, Kanukupolu and ‘Ahau.
The students were enthusiastic and excited about the visit and wanted to know more about mangroves.