One reason modern typhoons may cause more damage is mangrove destruction. When healthy, mangroves — which can form dense forests along tropical coastlines around the world — create a powerful barrier between land and sea. Recent research has found that for each kilometre of mangrove forest that ocean waves pass through, water levels can be reduced by half a meter (1.6 feet). Milliard Villanueva, the mayor of Concepcion, is adamant about the importance of restoring nature in order to adapt to the impacts of stronger typhoons: “It is the first line of defense, particularly on storm surge,” he said. For anyone working in tourism in coastal areas, this article is an important reminder of why mangroves and coral reefs matter so much.