Preserving Forests on the Island of Sainte-Marie
Duration of the partnership
With 4000 hectares of forests, of which 800 are remarkable, 172 ha of mangroves and 49 species on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species, the island of Sainte-Marie has been classified as a priority site to be protected by the state of Madagascar. Slash-and-burn agriculture, over-exploitation of resources and land pressure cause deforestation and soil erosion and directly threaten the island’s biodiversity and the future services of ecosystems given back to the population.
To put a stop to this deforestation process, the project supports local actors in the implementation of conservation actions, in particular in the creation of a marine and terrestrial Protected Area, taking into account the three forests and marine and coastal ecosystems (reefs and mangroves) and the management of an ecological restoration programme for these ecosystems.
Having benefited from a partnership with the Maisons du Monde Foundation since 2016, GRET has carried out various actions as part of its project to preserve the island of Sainte-Marie.
Review of the results of the main actions carried out during six years of partnership:
Identification of the socio-ecological system (floristic and faunistic inventories, participative socio-economic studies) for the preservation of more than 260 species of interest to the island’s biodiversity
Submission of the initiative file for the creation of the Sainte-Marie Protected Area to the authorities
Involvement of the population through an association that federates them in the preservation of common goods, in particular the Kalalao forest, and its forest restoration of 5.6 hectares and 8.5 hectares of mangroves with local communities
The partnership has been renewed for a further three years to strengthen the involvement and empowerment of local populations, with the aim of scaling up, both geographically and in terms of beneficiaries and managed activities.
The project performance targets for 2022–2024 are as follows:
GRET; 30,000 inhabitants involved in the dialogue and consultation process; 80 members of the PCADDISM (Plateforme Concertation Appui Développement Durable Ile Sainte-Marie — consultation platform to support sustainable development on Nosy Boraha); 80 pilot households in areas adjacent to the Kalalao forest
The devolved and decentralised fishing, agriculture and environment authorities (urban municipality of Nosy Boraha) will also indirectly benefit from the project. Finally, as part of this partnership renewal, 60 new households will benefit from the support of GRET for the development of alternative economic activities.
The consultation platform aims to:
GRET’s approach to this project is designed to:
“This project allows us to restore a part of the mangrove forest that was razed during the construction of the Belle Vue seawall and bridge. This restoration is particularly important for Sainte Marie because the mangroves are spawning and nursery grounds for fish and shellfish. (…) A mangrove forest in good health thanks to the monitoring activities of the Communauté Locale de Base de St Joseph, manager of the mangrove forest, provides hope for an increase in fish and shellfish resources.”Abdallah ISSOUF of the Communauté Locale (VOI) of St Joseph, beneficiary of the project.