This paper presents a review around seagrass habitat in Tarawa Lagoon, Kiribati and explores the links between seagrass occurrence and the national priority issues of climate change, urban development, human health, nearshore fisheries, threatened species, ocean policy, research capacity and awareness. The contribution of healthy seagrass habitats to many aspects of these national issues is often overlooked and there is need to establish the knowledge gaps and priority actions that can enable mitigation of issues that impact on valuable seagrass resources and their management. Research data on seagrass habitats in Kiribati, and the wider Pacific Island region, is limited and this hinders informed decisions at local, national and regional levels. We present a comprehensive review on seagrass within a national context to aid prioritisation and uptake of information for resource owners, and wider stakeholders, in Kiribati while acknowledging local expertise. The paper highlights data and knowledge gaps that if addressed, will provide information useful to Kiribati nationals, communities and government stakeholders. Recommendations for actions that fill these gaps and build understanding of seagrass resources in Kiribati are provided.
- Human health
- Pollution & water quality