People, Environment

Ramsar Convention Approves 6-Year Plan

Ramsar Convention Approves 6-Year PlanRamsar Convention Approves 6-Year Plan

Programs on the agenda of the Ramsar Convention for the next six years have been approved at the convention’s 12th meeting, said the director of Iran’s Wetlands Project, Mohsen Soleimani Rouzbehani.

The six-year plan, which may be extended to nine years, aims to preserve wetlands and help revive endangered lagoons

The 12th Meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands was held in Punta del Este, Uruguay, on June 1 to 9. “Wetlands for Our Future” was the theme of COP12 meeting.

During the conference, discussions on wetlands were held with international organizations, such as the International Union for Conservation of Nature, said Soleimani, adding that meetings with sponsors of the convention, including Germany and Switzerland, were also part of the program.

“The key to effective conservation of wetlands is proper management of water resources; a notion reflected in the convention’s six-year plan,” he said.

Wetlands play a number of roles in the environment, principally water purification, flood control, carbon sink and shoreline stability. The water found in wetlands can be freshwater, brackish, or saltwater.

The UN Millennium Ecosystem Assessment determined that environmental degradation is more prominent within wetland systems than any other ecosystem on Earth. Pollution by urban, industrial and sanitary wastewater plus chemical pollutants and overdraft of water from wetlands upstream resources are among major threats to the ecosystems.

Iran has 250 wetlands, 24 of which are protected under the Ramsar Convention. Shourgol, Yadegarlou, Anzali, Shadegan, Khourmousa, Neyriz, Parishan, Urmia, Komijan and Hamoun are some of the Iran’s endangered wetlands listed on the Montreaux Record.

The Montreux Record is a register of wetland sites on the List of Wetlands of International Importance where changes in ecological character have occurred, are occurring, or are likely to occur as a result of technological developments, pollution or other human interference. It is maintained as part of the Ramsar List.