Return on Investment: How much did it cost to implement these activities? How do your results above compare to this investment?:
Restoration costs vary, but generally $1000-$2000 per hectare for 5-25 hectares and $1000 or less for projects greater than 25 hectares. A site will never return to the exact conditions pre-degradation, but the return on such an investment is certainly worth it based on the economics alone. The resulting social and environmental impacts further solidify the critical importance of mangrove restoration. A conservative valuation of mangroves at $3400 per hectare can be up to three times the return on investment and even at the lowest valuation of $1000 per hectare the return is still generally break even from an economic perspective. Accounting for the environmental and social benefits, restoration is a solid investment. The sustainable livelihoods generated from intact mangrove forests promote continued ecological management and strengthen community economies. Healthy mangroves attenuate damage from storm surge, reducing property damage and casualties while also promoting faster recovery in areas that might get little attention from state and national governments.
What are the main factors needed to successfully replicate this solution elsewhere?:
The biggest challenge in implementing CBEMR is not the actual restoration process itself, but gaining the permitted access to suitable sites. Though there may be 400,000 ha of abandoned and disused shrimp farms worldwide, and many of these in former mangrove areas, gaining needed permission or legal access to perform the restoration is an immense obstacle. It will take more education about the greater economic value of intact mangroves vs. the lesser value of a shrimp farm occupying the same area. In order to successfully implement MAP’s CBEMR method, restoration must: 1) be based on ecological mangrove principals – what was the area’s history of use, what mangrove species grew there, what caused the destruction or degradation, what were their hydrological requirements, how deep was the substrate in which they grew, what were the fresh water inputs, and where did exchange of tidal and sea water take place? 2) involve local stakeholders in planning, implementing, and monitoring 3) work with (not against) nature by encouraging natural regeneration 4) only resort to planting mangroves for very specific reasons where natural propagules are not available.