Coastal Region Conservation

Mains Marks Booster     31st July 2023        

"The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever." - Jacques Yves Cousteau

Global mapping project reveals widespread human impact on coastal areas, with 97% of coastlines worldwide affected by major land-based and marine stressors, according to University of Queensland researchers.

Important Facts: 

  • According to a survey by the United Nations, coastal areas support over 50% of the world's population and contribute to more than 60% of global GDP.
  • In India, a study conducted by the National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management (NCSCM) highlighted that coastal ecosystems contribute significantly to the country's economy, with coastal tourism alone contributing around 3-4% of India's GDP.

Importance of Coastal Region Conservation:

    • Biodiversity hotspot: Coastal regions are home to diverse species of plants, animals, and marine life, supporting intricate food webs and ecological balance.
    • Climate regulation: Coastal ecosystems, such as mangroves and seagrasses, play a significant role in carbon sequestration, mitigating climate change impacts. 
  • Examples:
  • Mangroves along the Sunderbans in India act as carbon sinks, storing large amounts of carbon dioxide and helping mitigate climate change.
  • Seagrass meadows in the Great Barrier Reef, Australia, absorb and store carbon dioxide, contributing to climate regulation.
  • Coastal protection: Healthy coastal habitats act as natural buffers, absorbing wave energy, reducing erosion, and protecting against storm surges and flooding.
  • Economic value: Coastal regions support industries like tourism, fisheries, and aquaculture, contributing to local economies and livelihoods.
  • Cultural significance: Coastal areas often hold cultural and historical importance, including traditional practices, indigenous communities, and archaeological sites.

Threats and Conservation Strategies

threats and strategies

Conservation Strategies for Coastal Regions:

  • Protected areas and marine reserves, Sustainable coastal development, Sustainable fisheries and aquaculture practices, Community engagement and participation
  • Ecosystem restoration: Restoring and rehabilitating degraded coastal habitats, such as mangroves, salt marshes, and coral reefs, enhances their resilience and functionality.

Initiatives for Coastal Region Conservation:

  • Marine Protected Areas (MPAs)
  • Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM)
  • Ecosystem-Based Adaptation (EBA)
  • Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture Practices
  • International Agreements and Conventions: Example: Ramsar Convention on Wetlands.
  • Community-Based Conservation: Example: Community-Based Coastal Resource Management (CBCRM) program in the Odisha 
  • Coastal Cleanup and Pollution Prevention Campaigns:. Example: Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup.


Conserving coastal regions is essential to safeguard biodiversity, protect against natural hazards, support local economies, and preserve cultural heritage. Through sustainable coastal development, protected areas, ecosystem restoration, and community engagement, we can ensure the long-term resilience and sustainability of these invaluable ecosystems.

Extra Marks Fetching component by theIAShub

  • The Great Barrier Reef, Australia: Conservation efforts, including marine protected areas, sustainable tourism practices and water quality management  have helped protect the iconic 
  • Reef system.
  • The Sundarbans, Bangladesh and India: The Sundarbans mangrove forest is a UNESCO World Heritage site where community-based conservation efforts have been successful in safeguarding biodiversity
output themes