GNF - Measures of the Post Tsunami Project

Project Measures


One focus of this three-years project is the conservation of mangrove forests in the regions of Maduganga and Madampe as well as Bolgoda. Mangrove trees can reach a height of 30 meters. They are adapted to the living conditions of brackish estuaries and salty littorals. Mangrove habitats are unique in the world. In no other biotope the same living space is shared so intensively by fresh and salty water species, sea organisms and land organisms. Over 60 different species of mangrove trees are known, more than 25 occur in the project region. All mangroves have an extensive root system that serves as a barrier against tidal waves and accumulates silt and sediments.

Besides the coral reefs and the tropical rain forests, the mangroves are the most productive and divers and at the same time most endangered ecosystems on earth. Approximately 50 % of the natural mangroves worldwide have been irrevocably destroyed. Traditionally mangroves are used as firewood, but the draining of vast areas for land reclamation purposes, rice and palm plantations as well as the intensification of prawn farming caused the dramatic decline of mangroves. This development has drastic effects for many people in rural regions. The income of the inshore fishery is deteriorating because many economically important fish species essentially depend on mangroves as their spawning areas. And even worse, if the mangrove forest is disturbed, the natural protection zone against tidal waves is missing.


Maduganga und Madampe were also flooded by the Tsunami. Approximately 25,000 people live in this area. Here, although some damages occurred, the people remained nearly unaffected by destruction and death. In comparison, in Ambalangoda, only some 100 meters away from the intact mangrove forest, the Tsunami caused terrible havocs and many people died. At deforested places the tidal wave can enter the heartland and leave severe destruction. An intact mangrove forest can substantially diminish the degree of damage created by tidal waves. In tree nurseries mangroves will be grown and planted in appropriate areas. The sewage will be purified through a green filter system. Fishermen families will get new fishing gear, nets and solar lamps for the night fishing provided they are willing to join working groups for the sustainable use of mangroves. One important aim of the project is to provide new livelihood opportunities and - at the same time - protect the unique nature and environment.

 Mangroves in Madampeganga
 Mangrove Nursery in Pathamulla at Maduganga
 Active Women Group Green Friends in the Mangrove Nursery in Pathamulla at Maduganga
 Girl with young mangrove seedlings