Mumbai: The Indian Ocean island nation of Seychelles has finalised the first-ever climate adaptation debt restructuring that also includes a strong marine conservation component. Supported by The Nature Conservancy, the restructuring will provide funding to support adaptation to climate change through improved management of coasts, coral reefs and mangroves.

A Marine Spatial Plan will be implemented for the entire Seychelles Exclusive Economic Zone, a territory approximately 3,000 times the size of their land mass, which will be managed for conservation as marine protected areas (MPAs) within five years.

Under the scheme, the Nature Conservancy will purchase up to $21.6 million of the nation’s over $400 million debt, and activities such as oil exploration and large-scale development in the most fragile habitat will be limited, while providing Seychelles with an innovative financial tool to support climate change adaptation, restoring coral reef and mangroves, and improving sustainable tourism.