Taiwan Aims High: Plans to Stockpile 700K Tons of Blue Carbon by 2030

"Blue Carbon Ecosystems: Vital Role of Coastal Ecosystems in Protecting Marine Life and Sequestering Carbon"

Coastal ecosystems, including mangroves, seagrass meadows, and tidal marshes, provide essential ecosystem services such as protecting coastal areas, serving as nurseries for marine species, and purifying water. These oceanic ecosystems and coastal regions are significant reservoirs of carbon, known as blue carbon, forming what is termed Blue Carbon Ecosystems (BCE). Blue carbon plays a crucial role in absorbing atmospheric CO2, impacting climate change and the global distribution of carbon wealth. Research indicates that countries like Australia, Indonesia, and Cuba are major contributors to global blue carbon wealth. However, only a few nations can fully offset their carbon footprint through blue carbon initiatives.

In recent years, Taiwan has emerged as a leader in developing a vibrant and sustainable blue carbon market. The Taiwanese government has been proactive in recognizing the value of blue carbon and has implemented policies and initiatives to promote its sustainable utilization. Taiwan’s focus is on enhancing the carbon sequestration capacity of its coastal ecosystems to foster economic growth and ecological resilience. The government aims to expand its conservation efforts by establishing maritime protected areas and diversifying afforestation projects. The sale of carbon credits from blue carbon projects will enable the scaling up of restoration, conservation, and development of these ecosystems.

Taiwan aims to establish a 700,000-ton Blue Carbon Oasis by 2030, leveraging its substantial blue carbon reserve of 350,000 tons, which surpasses its terrestrial forest (green carbon) counterpart. The mangrove-based blue carbon ecosystem in Taiwan offers a 2.5 times greater carbon offsetting effect compared to a similar-sized green carbon ecosystem, thanks to its advantageous geography and vast reserves. Researchers and industry experts highlight the resilience and stability of blue carbon, with higher carbon sequestration and sediment retention potential compared to forest lands. This makes blue carbon reserves attractive for investment opportunities, especially considering their endurance capacity against risks like illegal deforestation and wildfires.

The Taiwan Ocean Union, established in 2022 in alignment with the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030), aims to foster collaboration among academic institutions, government bodies, and stakeholders to develop and conserve Taiwan’s marine ecosystems. The Ocean Union focuses on key domains such as blue carbon ecosystems, marine environmental sustainability, marine observation technology, ocean laws and policies, marine databases, research vessels, and ocean engineering technology. The chairperson of the Taiwan Ocean Union, Professor Chiang Kuoping, emphasizes the importance of establishing a comprehensive marine research database to support policymakers in proposing effective measures and enhancing ocean industries.

Taiwan is actively exploring blue carbon prospects through initiatives like microalgae cultivation and carbon sequestration, supported by the government. This technology involves using algae to capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere through photosynthesis, converting it into biomass and oxygen. The microalgae are then sunk into the ocean, sequestering carbon. Microalgae can generate carbon credits through biomass production, biofuel production, wastewater treatment, and research activities. Partnerships between the Taiwan Ocean Research Institute and National Dong Hwa University aim to establish a monitoring system for marine species and blue carbon ecosystems.

Taiwan’s blue carbon initiative aligns with global climate goals by reducing carbon dioxide levels through ocean-based carbon dioxide removal technologies. The use of microalgae-derived biofuels as a renewable energy source contributes to a cleaner energy landscape, reducing dependence on fossil fuels. This initiative underscores Taiwan’s commitment to environmental stewardship and innovative climate solutions. The Ocean Affairs Council in Taiwan has finalized the revision of the “Blue Carbon Methodology” for native mangroves and seagrass beds, aiming to standardize measurement procedures for blue carbon sequestration and greenhouse gas reduction. Taiwan’s publication of “Taiwan’s Pathway to Net-Zero Emissions in 2050” outlines the action plan to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 and develop blue carbon reserves.

In conclusion, Taiwan’s ambitious goal of reaching a 700,000-ton blue carbon reserve by 2030 signifies significant progress towards sustainable environmental practices and climate action.

Matt Lyons

Matt Lyons

Matt Lyons is the founder of Forestry & Carbon. Matt has over 25 years as a forestry consultant and is invoilved in numerous carbon credit offset projects.

Leave a Replay

Scroll to Top