2nd February is World Wetlands Day – ‘Wetlands and Agriculture: Partners for Growth’

World Wetlands Day is an annually celebrated event that focuses global attention on the significance of our wetland ecosystems.

World Wetlands Day (WWD) is an annual event used by the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands as a campaign day to promote wetland ecosystems around the world.

Each year a new theme is selected for WWD highlighting a globally significant issue that affects wetlands.

For the year 2014 the World Wetlands Day theme is ‘Wetlands and Agriculture: Partners for Growth’, this is in recognition of the UN declared year for 2014 as the ‘International Year of Family Farming’.

The theme allows the opportunity for the general public to appreciate the significance of wetlands in relation to agricultural practices as well as recognize the effect of unsustainable agricultural methods on this significant ecosystem.

Poster highlighting the 2014 WWD theme ‘Wetlands & Agriculture: Partners for Growth’
Poster highlighting the 2014 WWD theme ‘Wetlands & Agriculture: Partners for Growth’

Download pdf report here

According to recently compiled information by the Ramsar secretariat, ‘In some regions of the world more than 50% of peat lands, marshes, riparian zones, lake littoral zones and floodplains have been lost, with conversion for agricultural uses being one of the primary reasons for these ongoing wetland losses’.

Rice farming in Fiji is an example of a wetland farm Photo by: Angie Harms
Rice farming in Fiji is an example of a wetland farm Photo by: Angie Harms

Through this global event, countries relay their experiences in terms of this long standing relationship between agriculture and wetlands as well as the practical ways that people have adopted to resolve negative effects that may arise.

This year in respect of the theme selected, the Ramsar Convention and Partner Organizations such as Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) offer tools and integrated approaches for the management of water resources to support agriculture for food production.

Further resources in regards to wetlands and agriculture can be viewed by visiting www.ramsar.org
Wetland taro – solving the dalo beetle problem.

Reinstating ancient terrace for wetland dalo in Navosa. Photo: T.King/VNV
Reinstating ancient terrace for wetland dalo in Navosa. Photo: T.King/VNV