World Wetland Day 2013

World Wetland Day – 2nd February
This year theme– Wetlands and Water Management

Largest wetland in ArgentinaWetlands are important conservation areas because of the depth of biodiversity they contain. There are a total of 26 wetland sites in India[1]. The world wetland day is observed each year on 2nd of February which marks the convention’s beginning. The convention takes its name after the name of the city in Iran where the convention was adopted in 1971. The convention’s aim is “the conservation and wise use of all wetlands through local and national actions and international cooperation, as a contribution towards achieving sustainable development throughout the world”[2]. The theme for this year is Wetlands and Water Management.

Under the National Wetland Inventory and Assessment, the MoEF provides data of various wetlands of India[3]. Wetlands are areas saturated with water supply and are defined little ecosystems in themselves and can be natural or constructed artificially. Wetlands can help as an effective remedy against floods besides providing direct and indirect livelihood benefits to the local population.

As per the Ramsar convention, a wetland is defined as “…areas of marsh, fen, peatland or water, whether natural or artificial, permanent or temporary, with water that is static or flowing, fresh, brackish or salt, including areas of marine water the depth of which at low tide does not exceed six metres[4].”

Wetlands have not gained as much importance as perhaps some other areas of conservation ecology in spite of being important service providers of a range of functions. Many bird species are directly dependent on them for habitat needs. With water scarcity becoming an important and urgent problem for mankind that needs effective remediation, it is important that wetlands occupy the heart of conservation efforts as water management is at the core of sustainable uses of wetlands.

Visit the Wetland site here to see how this year it is being celebrated.

Image credit: Martinsnm

 


[1] http://www.ramsar.org/cda/en/ramsar-pubs-notes-anno-india/main/ramsar/1-30-168%5E16561_4000_0__

[2] http://www.ramsar.org/cda/en/ramsar-wwd13-home1index/main/ramsar/1%5E26035_4000_0__

[3] http://envfor.nic.in/modules/others/?f=wetlands-atlases

[4]http://www.ramsar.org/cda/en/ramsar-documents-texts-convention-on/main/ramsar/1-31-38%5E20671_4000_0__

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