The destruction of huge areas of coastal mangroves around the Irrawaddy River delta in Myanmar in the last few decades amplified the flooding and worsened devastation there, according to a report and images released Thursday by the Food and Agriculture Organization.
Over all, the area of the Irrawaddy delta covered in mangrove forests has been halved since 1975. Wood harvesting has also reduced the density of the forests.
“Healthy mangrove forests are particularly good at reducing the force of waves because of the resistance provided by stilt roots as well as the trees’ trunks and branches,” the report said. “Mangroves also trap and stabilize sediment and reduce the risk of shoreline erosion.” More>>>