Yusmiana Puspitaningsih Rahayu

Mrs, Doctor of Philosophy Student

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Personal profile


Working as a junior researcher in Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries Republic of Indonesia, Yusmiana decided to pursue her PhD in The University of Western Australia. Her interest is in blue carbon studies, mainly in seagrass ecosystem. 


PhD thesis topic: Quantifying blue carbon as a value from seagrass meadows

Seagrasses are an important component of coastal ecosystems globally and they capture and store carbon in both biomass and sediments. However, if these ecosystems are degraded, they release carbon back to the atmosphere and shift from a carbon sink to a carbon source.  Indonesia has the largest extent of tropical seagrass in the world. The Indonesian government is developing policies to integrate coastal ecosystems that store carbon, like mangroves and seagrass meadows, into climate change mitigation strategies. These policies will need sound knowledge to underpin them. While knowledge of mangroves is quite good for Indonesia, knowledge of seagrass is still very limited. My proposed research will contribute to understanding carbon dynamics in seagrass meadows, by studying their geographical pattern, predicting carbon storage and sequestration, carbon biogeochemistry, and critical evaluation of methods for integrating seagrass into climate change mitigation policy in Indonesia. This study will add to our understanding of coastal carbon in Indonesia, and of how to link seagrass science to policy development more generally.

Why my research is important

The overarching objective of this PhD project is to understand the potential of seagrass to mitigate climate change through capturing and sequestering carbon. The significance of this PhD project lies in incorporating robust data and model development for carbon stock and sequestration assessment into a critical evaluation of a key policy framework. The research will involve novel aspects such as generation of statistical models to predict carbon stock, estimates of carbon flux, and comparison of carbon stock and sequestration in restored and natural meadows.


Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land


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