THE POTENTIAL OF SEAGRASS AS A CARBON STOCK AND CARBON SEQUESTRATION IN SULI COASTAL WATERS, AMBON ISLAND, INDONESIACharlotha Irenny Tupan and Mintje Wawo
As an autotrophic organism, seagrass has the ability to carry out photosynthesis by utilizing CO2 to produce new organic material and store it in biomass. The purpose of this study was to analyze carbon stocks and carbon sequestration of seagrasses Enhalus acoroides and Thalassia hemprichii. This research was conducted on May 2019 and located in the Suli Coastal Waters, Ambon Island. The study was conducted at two different stations, namely station one on the sandy substrate and station two on the muddy substrate. Analysis of carbon stocks began with the calculation of density and biomass, while carbon sequestration was analyzed based on growth and production rates. Seagrass samples were collected in 3 observation plots measuring 1 x 1 m placed randomly in the seagrass bed of Thalassia hemprichii and Enhalus acoroides at each station. The analysis of carbon content was based on the Walkley and Black method. The results of this study indicated that the total potential carbon stocks in the T. hemprichii ranged from 74.75gC.m-2- 119.98 g C.m-2 and in the E. acoroides ranged from 92.69gC.m-2-159.86 gC.m-2. Seagrassâs ability to absorb CO2 to produce biomass was 1.15gC.m-2.d-1- 1.51 gC.m-2.d-1 for T. hemprichii and 1.42 - 1.62 g C.m-2.d-1for E. acoroides. The muddy substrate with overgrown by E. acoroides had the potential of carbon stock, and carbon sequestration was higher than the sandy substrate with T. hemprichii.