Mapping mangroves to help their conservation.
Mangroves mark the place where the land and sea meet. Fringing the shores of tropical coastlines, they are home to many species, both marine and terrestrial. Mangroves are an essential part of the coastal ecosystem, protecting and providing for coastal communities. They also have an important role in the fight against climate change. But mangroves are one of the most threatened ecosystems. Global Mangrove Watch aims to change that.
Global Mangrove Watch gives access to near real-time information on where and what changes are happening to mangroves across the world. Coastal and park managers, conservationists, policymakers, and practitioners can use this information to pinpoint areas of mangrove loss and manage their restoration. The initiative was developed by Aberystwyth University, soloEO, The Nature Conservancy, Wetlands International and a host of other partners. Our role was to design and build the platform, and provide scientific support with data validation and visualisation.
Data-heavy platforms need a solid foundation — or in this case, a cloud — to keep everything in order. On Global Mangrove Watch, the data are stored and processed in the cloud. This means analysis and insights can be delivered quickly without slowing down the platform’s performance.
Balancing the need for fast platform analysis with data integrity was the biggest challenge for our Science team. To achieve this, pre-calculated zonal statistics for 102 countries and 160 of the largest coastal protected areas were generated using Google Earth Engine, and carefully validated by the mangrove experts. These statistics can then be pulled quickly into the data widgets when requested by a user.
Use Global Mangrove Watch to see...
… how much carbon is stored in mangroves.
… which countries have had the largest gain in mangrove habitat.
… how the extent of mangroves changed between 1996 and 2016.
What are people saying about it?