Cristiano Ronaldo named ambassador for Indonesian mangrove conservation | inside World Soccer

Cristiano Ronaldo named ambassador for Indonesian mangrove conservation

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Portugal and Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has agreed to be the ambassador for mangrove conservation in Indonesia.

Cristiano Ronaldo poses with Tomy Winata of the Mangrove Care Forum
Cristiano Ronaldo poses with Tomy Winata of the Mangrove Care Forum

Photo: Artha Graha Peduli Foundation

The Mangrove Care Forum, to be launched in the next two months, aims to raise awareness to the Indonesian and international community of the importance of conserving biodiversity and ecosystem of mangroves in the South Bay of Benoa, Bali.

Ronaldo's appointment was sealed at a meeting in Madrid on March 8, between the 28-year-old star and the project's founder, Tomy Winata, who is in Europe to attend the 56th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs.

"I am absolutely delighted that Ronaldo has agreed to support our cause to conserve mangrove forests in Indonesia," Winata said in a statement released by the forum.

"He is an ideal ambassador for mangrove conservation as he has mass appeal and we want the message of 'Save Mangrove, Save Earth' to reach the young and old, rich and poor.

"Mangrove conservation is an important but neglected area of conservation. We are running out of time. The world is losing mangroves at an alarming rate.

"The situation in Indonesia is particularly dire, we have lost more than two million hectares of our mangrove areas. Conserving mangroves is not only about protecting the environment but also the livelihood of many villagers."

Indonesia's Forestry Ministry estimates that the country has over nine million hectares of mangrove forests, of which some 70 percent has been lost to shrimp farming, oil palm plantations, rural and urban redevelopment.

Ronaldo said: "I am privileged to be able to play a role in conserving mangroves in Indonesia.

"I was in Aceh after the 2004 tsunami and the devastation I saw left a deep impression. I understand that in places where there were mangroves to provide the ecosystem buffer against high waves, more lives were saved and less damage sustained."

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