The leading cause of mangrove destruction is the meteoric growth of the shrimp farming industry in the developing world – 35% of all mangrove deforestation is caused by development for shrimp ponds. In an effort to produce cheap shrimp, mangroves and their accompanying ecosystem services are stripped from coastlines and replaced by open system shrimp farms that pollute the surrounding environment. Mangroves provide unique ecosystem services like:

• Nursery habitat for 75% of the worldʼs tropical and sub-tropical commercial fish
• Filtration of pollutants, preserving purity of coastal waters
• Prolific renewable resources for coastal communities including food, firewood, medicines, shelter, and tourism
• Protection of coastal communities from the ravages of tsunamis and hurricanes
• Efficient carbon sequestration, capable of sequestering far more CO2 per hectare than tropical rain forests
• Last remaining endemic habitat for wild Bengal tigers (Sundurbans mangroves)

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