‘Wetland Biodiversity: Why it matters’ is the theme of this years World Wetlands day (WWD), which will take place on Sunday, February 2nd. The event is an initiative of the Standing Committee of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands. The convention is named after the city of Ramsar in Iran where the convention took place. The Convention was established to increase awareness about the value of wetlands for the planet. Since the signing in 1971, over 160 countries have joined the convention, designating over 2,300 Ramsar sites across the world.
Did you know that an area of about 12.1 million km² approximately the size of Greenland is the area of available wetland resource across the world? However between 1970 and 2015, inland and marine/coastal wetlands both declined by approximately 35%. Wetlands are invaluable for biological diversity, providing habitats for countless species of flora and fauna.
In Ireland there are 45 Ramsar sites covering over 66,900 hectares, the Irish Ramsar Wetland Committee (IRWC) was set up by the Government in 2010 to assist in the protection, appreciation and understanding of wetlands in Ireland.
Check out your closest Ramsar site and become involved in events taking place across the country on Sunday 2nd Feb in a wetland near you.
Source: IrishWetlands.ie & NRN